Woolfred Cannot Eat Dandelions

Woolfred Dandelions9781433816727_p0_v1_s260x420Woolfred Cannot Eat Dandelions: A Tale of Being True to Your Tummy

Claudine Crangle, Author and Illustrator

Magination Press, Fiction, Sep. 28, 2014

Suitable for Ages: 4-7

Themes: Animals, Sheep, Food Intolerance

Opening:  “Most sheep will eat almost anything they come across… whether it’s good for them or not.” 

Synopsis: Woolfred is born with a delicate system. He can’t eat dandelions. It isn’t fair – the other sheep can eat whatever they want. Beautiful yellow clumps of dandelions grow everywhere and tempt him as he grazes. Finally he chews a mouthful of dandelions. They are so delicious until …Gaaaaglewaaaglelewush!

Why I like this book:

  • Claudine Crangle has written an engaging story about a daring young sheep who knows he can’t eat dandelions, but wants to taste them in the worst way.  Sound familiar?
  • This is one of a few picture books I’ve seen for children who have a food intolerance to products like milk, gluten, eggs, fructose and yeast. This is not a book about food allergies that may be life threatening. It is a book about learning to cope with a food intolerance and still lead a normal and active life.
  • The plot is humorous. Does Woolfred learn his lesson after he tries the dandelions the first time? No! He tries eating the different parts of the dandelion and has the same tummy reaction each time. The narrative is funny and the text is simple and silly.
  • Children with food intolerance issues will certainly identify with Woolfred. Like Woolfred, they want to eat the same foods their friends eat at school, birthday parties and outings. Like Woolfred, they don’t want to feel deprived, different or lonely.
  • I love Crangle’s takeaway message for children. While Woolfred focuses on what’s missing, he’s not seeing the good things in his life.
  • Crangle’s illustrations are in bright and colorful spring colors. They are expressive, warm and endearing. Crangle’s process is quite unusual. She begins with “an idea cut out of paper with a knife. Designs are translated through the printmaking process and evolve with each proof.  They are done by hand without any computer manipulation.”

Resources: The book is a resource for parents, caregivers and children. Children with a food intolerance will have fun discussing Woolfred’s antics and comparing them to their own situation. At the end of the story Woolfred begins to think about the other sheep and shares how his friends have differences: Dank rolls in bad smells. Lana sneezes when she’s near clover. Marino is terrified of bees. Bert likes to scratch his bottom on the ground. This would be a fun family activity to discuss how everyone is different.  Visit Claudine Crangle at her website.

Every Friday, authors and KidLit bloggers post a favorite picture book. To see a complete listing of all the Perfect Picture Books (PPB) with resources, please visit author Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Books.

About Patricia Tiltonhttps://childrensbooksheal.wordpress.comI want "Children's Books Heal" to be a resource for parents, grandparents, teachers and school counselors. My goal is to share books on a wide range of topics that have a healing impact on children who are facing challenges in their lives. If you are looking for good books on grief, autism, visual and hearing impairments, special needs, diversity, bullying, military families and social justice issues, you've come to the right place. I also share books that encourage art, imagination and creativity. I am always searching for those special gems to share with you. If you have a suggestion, please let me know.

33 thoughts on “Woolfred Cannot Eat Dandelions

  1. This is a great resource for parents and a great way to introduce food intolerances to kids. I think all kids will like this book since it talks about unfairness and differences. all kids feels like they are on outside sometimes.

    Thanks for recommending this book to us, Patricia! It will be a really valuable addition to any library. 🙂


    • Yes, it is a book any child can read. But it is a great resource for parents. And, it’s a very funny story about Woolfred learning the hard way and forgetting there is more to life than not being able to eat certain foods.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree with everyone and you, Pat: it is a terrific and fun way to get a message about food intolerance to kids (and adults)! Humor is always the best way to teach about an issue. 🙂 Have a terrific weekend!


  3. This looks wonderful! I really really like the cover illustration. I’m one of those people who tend to judge books by their covers (probably not the best method, but it is what it is). Anyway judging by this book’s cover it looks lovable and entertaining. I will definitely put it on my to-read list.


  4. Oh, Pat, you got me chuckling. A great (serious) topic and the fun language (“Bert scratches his bottom on the ground!”). Looks wonderful.


  5. What a terrific way to talk about food intolerances and I just love the list of differences at the end. Great find and there are very few picture books addressing this. Thank you.


    • That’s why I was so happy to find this book because there are few books on the subject for kids. And, books written with such humor. The illustrations are spectacular. I can only imagine kids predicting what’s going to happen next to Woolfred.


  6. Woolfred Cannot Eat Dandelions looks like a book for us! I love the cover. The illustrations look fantastic. My poor son cannot have dairy and at first it was hard on him — but now he voluntarily declines it without a fuss. It will be nice to see that he isn’t the only one — because I’m sure sometimes he feels like he is. I have requested that my library purchase this book. I’m sure there are plenty of parents interested in a picture book like this one!


  7. What a delightful way to get the topic of food allergies into a book! Poor Woolfred (love his name :)) – I’m sure lots of children can relate to his troubles. We don’t have a lot of books on our list that address food allergies, especially not in such a palatable way, so I’m very glad you’re adding this one to our list! Thanks, Pat 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Susanna! I was delighted to find this book on food intolerance, since it is a problem for children (and adults)! It is done with such humor! I loved the text and illustrations.


  8. Patricia – I am overwhelmed with gratitude for your kind review of Woolfred Cannot Eat Dandelions … and reading the comments that follow has made my day. It has been a dream come true to reach out to kids growing up just like I did. Thank you so much for your support!!


    • Thank you Claudine for visiting. I’m pleased you enjoyed the review and the comments from readers. They really enjoyed your book. It is a much needed book for children who won’t feel so alone. And you told the story with so such humor!


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