Frog and Toad Are Friends
Front cover with Caldecott Honor seal
|Series||Frog and Toad|
|Genre||Children's picture book, short story collection|
|Publisher||Harper & Row (I Can Read)|
|LC Class||PZ7.L7795 Fr|
|Followed by||Frog and Toad Together|
Frog and Toad Are Friends is an American children's picture book, written and illustrated by Arnold Lobel and published by Harper & Row in 1970. It inaugurated the Frog and Toad series, whose four books completed by Lobel comprise five easy-to-read short stories each. It was a Caldecott Honor Book, or runner-up for the American Library Association Caldecott Medal, which recognizes the year's best illustration in an American children's picture book.
Frog rushes over to Toad's house one fine spring morning in April, but Toad is not eager to get up. Frog eventually gets Toad up out of bed and no sooner does he explain about the whole new year they will have together than Toad decides to go back to bed. Since Toad has slept since November, he asks Frog to come back to wake him up when it is half past May. Not wanting to be lonely until that time, Frog takes advantage of the fact that Toad has not changed his calendar since November and rips off the month pages until he reaches April, but rips off the April page as well and manages to get Toad out of bed to admire the beauty of spring.
One summer day, Toad notices that Frog is not feeling well and helps him to bed. Frog requests a story, but Toad has difficulty trying to come up with a story to tell his friend. Walking up and down the porch, standing on his head, pouring water over his head, and banging his head against the wall fail to get Toad anywhere. However, Frog feels better and allows Toad to get in bed so he can tell him a story. Frog tells a story detailing what Toad has been doing for him throughout the chapter, but the time Frog finishes, Toad is already fast asleep.
A Lost Button
After Frog and Toad return from a long walk, Toad notices a button has fallen off his jacket. Retracing their steps, the friends return to the meadow, the woods, and the stream where they had walked. Frog, a sparrow, and a raccoon each find buttons, but none of them are Toad's missing button (his was a big round thick white button with four holes). Eventually, Toad gets so angry over not finding his button that he runs home, and discovers his missing button had fallen off before the walk. To make it up to Frog for the wild goose chase, not only does Toad sew his button back on his jacket, but sews on the other buttons they found as well and gives it to Frog the next day.
Frog and Toad go down to the stream to go swimming. While Frog prefers to swim naked, Toad prefers to swim wearing a bathing suit, but tells Frog not to look at him when he's out of the water because he looks funny in his bathing suit. During the swim, a turtle comes by, prompting Toad to ask Frog to tell the turtle to leave. However, even though Frog justifies to the turtle why he wants him to leave, the turtle, plus some lizards, a grass snake, a pair of dragonflies, and a field mouse all want to see Toad's bathing suit. Toad decides to stay in the water until everybody leaves, but eventually comes out when he begins to sneeze. As soon as he gets out, everyone (including Frog) laughs at him.
While coming by Toad's house for a friendly visit, Frog notices Toad looking sad. Toad explains that it is the time when he has to wait for the mail because he never gets any mail. Feeling sad for his friend, Frog goes home, writes a letter addressed to Toad, and asks a snail to deliver the letter to Toad's house. Returning to Toad's house, Frog tries to convince Toad to try again at waiting for the mail, but ends up waiting for it himself. When Toad asks why, Frog mentions the letter and describes what he wrote in it, which cheers up Toad enough to wait for the letter. It takes four days for the snail to reach Toad's house, but he eventually arrives with Toad's letter, Toad is very happy to know the wait was worth it.
- "Frog and toad are friends" (first edition). Library of Congress Online Catalog (catalog.loc.gov). Retrieved 2015-09-18.
"Caldecott Medal & Honor Books, 1938–Present". Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC). American Library Association (ALA).
"Welcome to the Caldecott Medal Home Page". ALSC. ALA. Retrieved 2015-09-18.
- Frog and Toad are Friends by Arnold Lobel" (starred review). Kirkus Reviews. August 1, 1970. Retrieved 2015-07-01.