The Story of Ferdinand, by Munro Leaf

Everything about this book- the red cover, the simple black sketches, the font even- takes me to my childhood. I remember Ferdinand being read to me. By my father, my mother, my aunts, my uncles, my grandparents…well, you get the picture. It is the most lovely, gentle book that I would categorize in the “every child should have a copy of this” file. It’s about a peaceful young bull in Spain who has no interest in bucking about and fighting like the other bulls. He likes to sit just quietly under his cork tree and smell the flowers.

However, on the one day that the men come looking for bulls for the fights, Ferdinand happens to sit upon a bee and his reaction so stuns and impresses the men that they immediately choose him to take to the city. Of course, when Ferdinand is led into the ring, he wants nothing to do with the fancy toreador and just sits quietly, breathing in the scent of all the flowers in the lovely Spanish ladies’ hair.

Even just now, in paraphrasing the story, I feel calm. It’s a delightful story to read aloud; even when the kids are feeling rowdy, it always momentarily chills them out, putting smiles on their little faces.

What books from your childhood call out to you now? Are there any that transform your mood when you read them aloud?

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5 thoughts on “The Story of Ferdinand, by Munro Leaf

  1. I love this book also, and it was a favorite to read aloud to my children. I don’t think I knew it in my own childhood, but my mother remembered it from hers. Frog and Toad books take me back to a good simple past, I read those to my cousins when they were small. Also, Little Bear! I also adored Eloise, as awful as she could be and loved those drawings. Your book blog is great, Amelie! I’m adding it to my blogroll!

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  2. I love this book as a kid and I had forgotten all about it. I can’t wait to get it and read it to the kids. Especialy my son, who so reminds me of Ferdinand. Thank you and thanks for coming by.

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  3. Pingback: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, by William Joyce | Amélie's Bookshelf

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