Review: The Pout-Pout Fish
Thursday, June 04, 2015 10:00 AM

The Pout-Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen. Pictures by Dan Hanna. New York: Farrar Straus Giroux, 2008. 0-374-36098-7.


The Pout-Pout fish is a very unhappy fish, because he believes that he can only frown and bring gloom to everyone around him. As he swims around the ocean many creatures try to give him the advice to smile and be happy. However, the Pout-Pout fish keeps saying that he is the way he is, and that’s never going to change. Then, the Pout-Pout fish sees a beautiful fish he has never seen before. Surprisingly, she swims right up to the Pout-Pout fish and kisses him! As she swims away he tells all his friends that he was wrong! He ISN’T a Pout-Pout fish, he is a Kiss-Kiss fish, and he is going to spread cheer all around.


The Pout-Pout Fish is such a fun book to read aloud with it’s rhyming verses and repeating “blub, bluuub, bluuuuuuub” each time the Pout-Pout fish insists that he is just gloomy and is going to stay that way. The story is sweet, and shows kids that sometimes one action, or changing your thoughts, can change the way you look at the whole world. However, my favorite thing about this book are the illustrations. Dan Hanna does a wonderful job capturing the gloominess of the Pout-Pout fish in the illustrations, and he just seems to get gloomier as the story goes on. The colors are vivid and the illustrations crisp, making it visually interesting for kids.

Further Information

The Pout-Pout Fish is a very popular book in preschool storytimes. The kids love saying “blub, bluuub, bluuuuuuub” along with the Pout-Pout fish, and if it’s a small enough group you can ask them to name some of the sea animals they see in the illustrations. This also would be a great book for a summer or ocean display. There are more Pout-Pout books available if you enjoyed this title!

If you enjoyed The Pout-Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen, you may enjoy Memoirs of a Goldfish by Devin Scillian and Tim Bowers, I’m a Shark! by Bob Shea, and I’m the Best Artist in the Ocean by Kevin Sherry.

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