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Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato by…

Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato (edition 1997)

by Tomie dePaola

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7472012,453 (3.5)1
Title:Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato
Authors:Tomie dePaola
Info:Putnam Juvenile (1997), Paperback, 32 pages
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Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato by Tomie dePaola

Recently added byjohnstonr, ecsalomon, private library, gibcat, maddiemoof, bonanners, abecke14, ericammason, TamiNewell



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Really not a great moral for kids in this one! ( )
  maddiemoof | Oct 18, 2015 |
I enjoyed reading this book. The ending was my favorite part. The book teaches a lesson but has some irony in it at the end. I liked the irony, the illustrations and language in the book. The first thing I liked was the irony. Jamie O'Rourke was on his way to confess to Father O'Malley when he stumbled upon a leprechaun. Everyone knows that leprechauns are known for having a pot of gold. Jamie snatched the leprechaun and when the leprechaun shouted , "Let me go! Let me go!," Jamie said, "Not on your life. Not until you show me where you keep your pot of gold." Leprechauns are also known to be smart. THe leprechaun tells Jamie, "Oh please, Mr. Mortal Man, I''m just startin' out makin' fairy shoes and I only have one or two pieces of gold in my pot. Won't you take a wish instead?" The leprechaun pulled out a seed and gave it to Jamie telling him that he could wish for the largest pratie in the world. When Jamie planted the seed and an enormous potato grew and it was enough for all of the people of the village, for the entire year, Jamie said, "And you see, darlin' Eileen, I wasn't such a fool with that leprechaun after all." Eileen had to agree with him. What is ironic is that on the last page of the book, there is a picture of the leprechaun with an overflowing pot of gold. Jamie thought that he had outsmarted the leprechaun, but the leprechaun was truly the one to out-smart him. This made me giggle a little. I like the humor that was added there. Secondly, I liked the illustrations in the book. The illustrations match the words and some of them are humorous. When there are ascending pictures of the giant pratie rolling down the hill and people running from it, it is funny because no one ever runs from a giant potato that is rolling at them. This adds to the fantasy part of the story. This story is not realistic. Also, the pictures show emotion. For example, when Jamie was trying to pry the potato out of the ground and it wouldn't budge, there is an angry look on his face, making evident the frustration. Lastly, I liked the language of the book. Since this is an Irish Folktale, there are some Irish words and connotations throughout. Also, as I read the book, I found myself reading it aloud in an Irish accent.

The big idea/message of the story is not to be lazy, and help others out. Jamie was a very lazy man. Although he thought he had out-smarted the leprechaun, in the end it is evident that he did not. Maybe if Jamie was not so lazy and rude at times, he would have been smarter and gotten gold from the leprechaun, rather than a seed. Although they had enough potatos to last them a long time, Jamie could have had a lot of gold. ( )
  abecke14 | Oct 13, 2015 |
This story is cute and entertaining for students, however i do not see much educational value for it other than a tool to practice reading. The main message of the story is pretty unclear, but what i would draw from it is that you should always have faith in those you love. Jamie was the laziest man in Ireland and when his wife got sick and couldn't care for her lazy husband, she had to have faith in him to take care of her. The voice of the author is interesting in this book compared to most because he uses Irish words and language in his dialogue. I think this is good exposure for younger students to see that not all people speak the same way depending on where you live or come from. Also, at the end of the story when Eileen told the villagers to take pieces of Jamie's huge potato, it teaches children the importance of sharing and how neighbors can help each other out. ( )
  mskell2 | Mar 23, 2015 |
Summary: Jamie O?Rourke is the laziest man in all of Ireland, far too lazy to help his wife on their farm. Then, after a chance encounter with a leprechaun, Jamie finds himself growing the biggest potato in the world?
Personal Reaction: Funny book and I enjoyed it.
Classroom Extension: Use during the month of March for St. Patrick's Day and as an example of a folktale from Ireland. ( )
  LorraineAllen | Feb 10, 2015 |
I'm a little torn about this book. I think the story and the accompanying illustrations are great! I think the illustrations are simple, and easily interpreted by all ages. The thing that I don't really care for about the book is the moral. I was waiting for Jamie to realize the error of his lazy ways, but in the end of the book, he ends up being rewarded for being lazy and never earns his lesson. Essentially the big idea of this book is supposed to be that "it's not always best to take the easy way out" but it comes across as "Taking the easy way out still pays off in the long run." ( )
  jknuts1 | Oct 23, 2014 |
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Jamie O'Rourke was the laziest man in all of Ireland.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0698116038, Paperback)

"Jamie O'Rourke is the laziest man in all of Ireland." So begins well-known children's book author and illustrator Tomie dePaola's retelling of a popular Irish folktale. Jamie is accustomed to his wife doing all the household and garden chores, so when she injures her back, he figures he's sure to starve to death. But as luck would have it, he chances upon a leprechaun. The elfin man offers Jamie the biggest "pratie" in the world in exchange for letting him go.

Feeling self-satisfied, Jamie plants the seed, which soon grows into a potato big enough to be a logistical nightmare for the village. Luckily, his wife comes through for him once again, and everyone ends up happy and full. This is not a redemptive tale--Jamie does not learn to be industrious. It is, however, a lively, simple-yet-outlandish, brightly illustrated story about a man and a potato, with a leprechaun thrown in, for luck. (Ages 4 to 8)

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:03:48 -0400)

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The laziest man in all of Ireland catches a leprechaun, who offers a potato seed instead of a pot of gold for his freedom.

(summary from another edition)

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