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I Wish I Were a Butterfly

by James Howe

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598938,035 (4.43)1
A wise dragonfly helps a despondent cricket realize that he is special in his own way.

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This is one of those books that made me wonder if it's really one of those children's books that is written for adults.

But then I think, aren't adults just little kids anyway, especially during the times when we feel ugly and wish we looked like someone else... someone more glamorous than us?

I really like the artwork in the book. It's soft and beautiful.


Sometimes I find myself being overly critical of the language in children's books and wondering if it sends the 'wrong message.' This talks about believing you are beautiful and the main character doesn't start to believe he is until someone tells him he is.

But before I get all up in arms about them message and whether I'm reading too much into it, I think: Well, it feels damn good when someone says you're beautiful. And I believe the message is that everyone has beauty, everyone thinks they don't, and everyone wants to be someone else sometimes. But that it's important to get real and know that it's OK to feel hideous sometimes, it's OK to feel beautiful and you're more beautiful than you realize. :)

I can't believe I waxed this poetic on this, lol.
  coffeefairy | Nov 21, 2020 |
I love how James Howe always finds ways to build self esteem within his readers. This book is open for many interpretations but it's obvious underlying message is that our differences are what makes us beautiful, maybe not in the same way as a butterfly, but in the way we are who and what we are. Whether you are the littlest cricket or an old spider you bring beauty to this world and you should never let it be taken from you. This book should be most popular in today's youth that are so hyper focused on their appearance and online presence, it would save many children having a message like this. ( )
  MeganSchneider | Mar 9, 2017 |
Genre: Fantasy. Summary: This is an intriguing story about how one person's careless words can so easily affect another. In this case a little cricket is told he is ugly by a frog. In taking this to heart, the little cricket ceases to do the things which make him a cricket. He no longer wants to go outside or play his music like usual. A glow worm, dragonfly and lady bug attempt to tell him that he should not listen to what others think, but the little cricket does not believe them. He believes the lie of the frog and wants to be a beautiful butterfly instead. It is not until he meets the Old One, a spider, that the littlest cricket begins to realize that beauty is not in what a stranger tells you. The spider helps change the crickets view and to see what is beautiful about him. ( )
  kvelin | Sep 2, 2015 |
In this story, a little cricket thinks he is ugly because the frog in the pond told him so, and all he wants is to be a butterfly, not realizing the wealth of talent he possessed. This book had beautiful paintings for the illustrations, and proved to be a beautiful picture-book about envy, beauty, and self-esteem. I adored the ending; so powerful! I would use this book to teach about individual beauty, perspectives, value, and bullying's affects on people. A good fantasy book! ( )
  AmandaLK | Jan 20, 2015 |
I thought this was a really lovely book with beautiful illustrations. I loved that it dealt with the different things that make us beautiful, and how one person's opinion of us is not fact. Even as an adult reading it, it was a nice reminder that what makes us beautiful is not always what we expect and the person that we are spending our energy envying may be envying us back. ( )
  KelseyAnnB | Dec 7, 2013 |
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A wise dragonfly helps a despondent cricket realize that he is special in his own way.

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