Read The Enormous Egg by Oliver Butterworth Louis Darling Online


Young Nate Twitchell is surprised when one of the hens on his family farm lays a giant egg. After a painstaking wait, Nate is even more surprised when it hatches and out pops a baby triceratops that he names Uncle Beazley! But when Nate decides to keep the dino and raise it on his own, he has no idea what he's getting himself into. As Uncle Beazley grows, Nate and his famiYoung Nate Twitchell is surprised when one of the hens on his family farm lays a giant egg. After a painstaking wait, Nate is even more surprised when it hatches and out pops a baby triceratops that he names Uncle Beazley! But when Nate decides to keep the dino and raise it on his own, he has no idea what he's getting himself into. As Uncle Beazley grows, Nate and his family realize they are not equipped to take care of a full-sized dinosaur, and so with the help of their scientist friend, Nate and Uncle Beazley set off for the National Museum in Washington, D.C., on the hunt for the perfect home for a modern-day dinosaur—-then the real trouble begins!The Enormous Egg was originally published in 1956 and has been a classic in children's literature ever since. This brand new edition features amazing new illustrations from Eisner-award winning graphic novelist Mark Crilley (creator of Akiko and Miki Falls)....

Title : The Enormous Egg
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780395732496
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 202 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Enormous Egg Reviews

  • Cheryl
    2019-12-05 21:07

    Out-of-date and sexist, not to mention implausible. But it includes this: "No, Joe, a scientist doesn't know all the answers. Nobody does, not even teachers. But a scientist keeps on trying to find the answers." And so, I say, sure, read it if you like.Otoh, I remember now that I didn't actually like it all that much when I was a kid, either.

  • Koz
    2019-11-23 16:43

    I remember reading this book when I was younger and thinking, "Holy Crap! You mean this is all I have to do to get a pet dinosaur??!!" And then I learned the definition of "fiction." I hate books.Update 1/2013: Re-read this last week, and it's still fun. Also surprised to see that the Dinosaurs-->Birds thing was around in the 1950s.

  • Laura Harrison
    2019-11-25 15:47

    How I love Oliver Butterworth! A childhood favorite illustrated by another fav Louis Darling. A wonderfully written, classic and fun story.

  • Mary
    2019-11-10 14:05

    I love this book - it's one of my all-time favorites, childhood or otherwise! As this story begins, Nate Twitchell, a nine-year-old boy living with his family in the small rural town of Franconia Notch, notices that one of the family's hens seems to be swelling up like a balloon. One morning, Nate goes out to the henhouse and finds the hen, now normal-sized, pacing up and down in front of her nest "in a kind of daze". Small wonder - this perfectly ordinary chicken has just laid an egg the size of a cantaloupe! Baffled by the size of the egg and its peculiar "leathery" shell, the Twitchells report the strange incident to the local newspaper, and Nate and his egg wind up on the front page. A week later, a paleontologist from the Smithsonian Institution, who's vacationing in Franconia Notch to do a little fishing, asks to see the enormous egg. Upon closely examining the egg, and determining that its contents are very much alive, the scientist - without revealing his guess as to what's inside it - entreats the Twitchells to keep a close guard on the egg, protecting it carefully from predators or anything else that might harm it. Puzzled by the scientist's controlled but obvious excitement, the Twitchells oblige without quite understanding what the fuss is all about. One early morning several weeks later, "what the fuss is all about" is spelled out to them in no uncertain terms as Nate, on his usual crack-of-dawn visit to check the egg, discovers a newborn triceratops in the nest! The lovable descriptions of Nate's first experiences with his astonishing new pet, and the inevitable media circus it brings to the ordinarily sleepy little town, make for absolutely wonderful reading. I've always wanted to have "Uncle Beazley" as a pet! I've gone back to read this story many times, and each time the tale of the "world's only living dinosaur" is just as good as the first time I read it. Not to be missed!

  • Robin Kempf
    2019-11-24 16:05

    3.5 stars, probably. Fun fantasy for any kid to own a dinosaur, but what I loved was how this dinosaur becomes a matter of federal policy. Democracy springs into action. How will Uncle Beasley fare? You’ll have to read to find out.

  • Mary
    2019-12-02 19:45

    My friend Mary Kate kept telling me this was a great book and she was right. The ending was the best -- a dinosaur hatches out of the egg and they end up moving him to the National Zoo in Washington, DC. Well a committee of congressmen find out and decide that keeping a dinosaur is too expensive. The speeches of the politicians about protecting American children and saving taxpayer money are very funny, and heartbreaking in that they sound just as sensible as our current representives: "This animal does not belong in our National Zoological Park. He is not an American animal, and our national Zoo is no place for him. We must not maintain foreignfreaks at the public expense. Lions, tigers, giraffes--all the proper animals yes. But no un-American, outmoded creatures from foreign places. Dinosaurs are extinct, aren't they? Do you want people to get the false idea that such things still exist right here in America? ... I see my duty. Today in the Senate I shall propose legislation to make it unlawful to keep any out-of-date, unusual, or unlikely animals in the National Sorr or in the National Parks or anywhere within the borders of the United States or its possessions." (p. 154-5)"I always feel so helpless when I get tangled up with Congress, I just don't understand how their minds work. I know an Archaeopteryx when I see one, and I can tell an Ichthyosaur from a Plesiosaur, or a Trilobite from a Grapolite, but I don't know anything about Senators." (Dr. Ziemer on p. 156) There is also a great NH description toward the end of the book when Nate returns home:"It was one of those terrific days that you get sometimes up here in October. The sky was so blue you could hardly believe it, and everywhere you looked you could see all those bright red and yellow leaves against the sky. It looked as if Nature had put everything she had into making one really perfect day. Even the smells were perfect--a mixture of smoke from across the street, and that dry smell of leaves on the ground, and the smell of warm grass and dirt in the sunshine, and just on the edge of it all, the faintest whiff of sweet cider." (p. 185-6)

  • Canavan
    2019-12-08 21:10


  • Kay
    2019-12-08 13:10

    A piece on NPR on guilty reading pleasures led me to re-read The Enormous Egg. As with so many things aimed at children, much of Butterworth’s commentary is way over their little heads. On the surface, this is a simple, very funny story about a farm family in Freedom, New Hampshire. One of their hens lays an enormous, funny looking egg. Nate is determined to do whatever it takes to hatch the egg. Since it is too big for the bemused hen to turn, he goes out to the barn every three hours to turn the egg for her. When the egg finally hatches, everyone is surprised to find that it looks just like a very small dinosaur. A paleontologist happens to be vacationing at a farm down the road and is very interested in the hatchling. Nate takes good care of Uncle Beazley, as they name the little guy, but he soon grows out of his pen and even out of the barn. A plan is formed to take the triceratops to Washington DC and Nate gets to go along to see him settled in. What happens when Congress finds out about Uncle Beazley is where the grown-up part of the story kicks in. At Senate hearings Senator Granderson fulminates “He is not an American animal, and our National Zoo is no place for him. We must not maintain foreign freaks at the public expense. Lions, tigers, giraffes – all the proper animals, yes. But no un-American, outmoded creatures from foreign places. The dinosaurs are extinct, aren’t they? Do you want people to get the false idea that such things still exist, right here in America?” At this point, I checked, and sure enough, the book was written in 1956. I think the phrase un-American was a clue. Anyway, the things those Senators say and do are simply amazing, and not in a good way. This was a fun book to re-read and enjoy as I did when I was young, and also had some interesting things to say about politics, politicians and Washington DC in general.

  • Greg Zink
    2019-11-30 13:52

    Yes, I know, this is a kids book and I am an adult, but I picked it up the other night and couldn't stop until I finished it. The Enormous Egg was probably my favorite book when I was growing up, so I really enjoyed going back to it and finding I still loved it. The storyline is simple but beautiful, the writing is concise yet evocative, the illustrations are gorgeous and the emotion is vivid. And all that for a story about a boy and a dinosaur!Like I said before, the storyline is really simple - a boy in New Hampshire finds an enormous egg in the henhouse, which ends up hatching into a baby triceratops. Nate then has to deal with everyone's interest in his unique "pet," from scientists to politicians to his own family. Over the course of the book he becomes close to the dinosaur, leading up to an emotional denouement. Although the plot is firmly set in the 1950s, the characters feel real and it is still as great a story today.As a child, I loved this book because I would have been thrilled with a real pet triceratops, but rereading it I see that there were a bunch of really good lessons beneath the surface about responsibility and standing up for what you believe in. It's a cute concept done really well, and I think I enjoyed it just as much or even more today than I did way back when.As a last side note, if you've read this book and are in Washington DC, make a point to stop by the National Zoo. Believe me, it will be worth it!

  • Laura (Book Scrounger)
    2019-11-23 13:51

    This is a childhood favorite of my husband's, influenced in no small part, I'm sure, by the fact that he shares a last name with the main character (and grew up/lives about an hour's drive from where this is set). So a first line like "My name is Nate Twitchell, but I can't help that" is an amusing way to start out. I can understand the comparisons to Homer Price here (though I think this is a bit wordier), especially in terms of descriptions of small-town life around mid-century.The premise is that one of Nate's chickens lays an enormous egg, and after several weeks of waiting and wondering, a dinosaur hatches out. Yes, it's filled with absurdity (without being over the top), but I still enjoyed the story and I'm sure my dinosaur-loving son will too someday.

  • Kate
    2019-11-18 14:56

    I picked up this book at a garage sale for a quarter. A children's book, written in 1956, it tells the tale of an egg laid by an ordinary hen, which turns out to be a dinosaur egg. The dinosaur, which I need not remind you, hasn't been seen in millions of years on earth, hatches and .. well, I don't want to spoil the story. The writing, for having been written in 1956, sometimes feels old-fashioned, but it kept my attention throughout. I was truly interested to realize the situations described -- social, political, etc. -- were pretty close to what would happen now, 50 years later. Definitely a good read.

  • Adriel
    2019-12-04 19:59

    This is not one of those classics that stands the test of time. It is full of weird gender stuff (girls do not like dinosaurs, only want to become telephone operators or homemakers) and old white scientists who smoke too much. The premise seems interesting, but the story is boring, takes too long to go anywhere and while the idea of a dinosaur is neat, there is no emotional attachment to the creature by Nate, only a sense of entitled ownership. I quit. boo.

  • Nevada Libert
    2019-11-29 14:05

    i love this book! how they had to save the one and only living dinisor. great story about a boy with a prehistorical reptile and how he had to come up with ways to feed it and keep it warm, and to save it from the sentors who wanted to kill him and stuff he, and how the boy had to come up with his own speech to save his best friend the dinysor.

  • Erin
    2019-12-09 13:43

    What would YOU do if a dinosaur hatched in your backyard? Nate Twitchell and his family can give you a few ideas. This charming story is entertaining and imaginative. I can see why it is considered a classic and really enjoyed reading it for this year's Battle of the Books.

  • Allison M
    2019-12-04 18:55

    My son enjoyed it a lot, but it wasn't my favorite that we've read together

  • Kathryn
    2019-11-28 15:58

    I SO would have loved a baby triceratops when I was little!

  • Kim
    2019-11-09 20:48

    One School, One Book challenge. Cute read, originally published in 1956. My 1st grader liked it.

  • Samuel Valentino
    2019-11-28 18:03

    I read this book a long time ago as a kid, because I loved dinosaurs. I remembered it now that I find myself raising chickens. In fact, the premise is so odd that I thought I had misremembered the story, but when I put in "chicken egg triceratops" this came right up!I wish I could say that as a kid, I thought that I could get a dinosaur this way. But the only way my parents would let me ever have a chicken was in nugget form, so even if hens laid dino eggs every day I'd still never have gotten one.Now that I have chickens, I'm somewhat glad it doesn't work that way. Oh, sure, who wouldn't want a dinosaur, but with the chickens' temperament I'm sure I'd get a Tyrannosaur instead of a Triceratops. They already go for my fingers instead of the food I'm holding out for them. Better to keep them smaller than me. Okay, back to the book.It definitely has aged, in the sense that we don't live in a world like that any more. Not only do they not have cell phones, they don't have consistently connected land lines. The operator has to put people through, and, when they're tired of getting calls, they just ask the operator to stop putting them through for the night (hey, I didn't say it was a bad world they lived in). A current version of this concept would be very differen, but that is not a negative. Anne of Green Gables would also be different if written today. So I took it as a period piece almost, and it was a nice leisurely story. Great illustrations too - in fact, the illustrator thanked the American Museum of Natural History that let her see Triceratops and Protoceratops models when she was working on them!

  • Bryson Hough
    2019-12-09 14:01

    The Enormous egg by Oliver Butterworth follows the journey of young Nate Twitchell and his family while they take care of a dinosaur. The egg had been there for a long time and is different compared to others. By different I mean larger it is huge compared to their normal chicken eggs. When the egg finally hatches it is not what anyone in there family expected it to be…it was a triceratops that the twitchells cannot take care of because of its pure size. Nate names the triceratops uncle Beazley. Later Nate and there family friend go to Washington D.C. to find a home for the dinosaur. But what they find is not what they expected. I would recommend this book to anyone that is in about the 4th or 5th grade. It is fairly short but is a very good read for someone who would like an adventure and a little bit of mystery. The book is good for anyone who is wanting a short easy read to get in touch with your kid inside you this is the one for you. Even though this is a one book with no series Oliver Butterworth has wrote many other great childrens books with the same idea in mind. So if you are ready to experience what it is like to live with a dinosaur read The enormous egg by Oliver Butterworth.

  • Kathy Strayer
    2019-11-11 14:50

    Have had this book forever-finally read it..& what a gem!...definite sign of the times that are no more - home cooked meals & desserts - kids w/chores...words of wisdom here & there...& congress had NUT CASES in the senate even back then..if it makes sense don't DO IT!!!..true the story is far-fetched - but what a good one for the imagination...just don't see it being read by the kids today...& the illustrations are a PLUS!

  • Elise
    2019-11-27 17:54

    A good premise for a story but surprisingly slow moving and (unnecessarily) long for a kid's book. There are definitely some moments about what girls and boys like that my kids noted aren't true -- though they weren't upset by any sexism in the sister volunteering to play secretary...probably because both of them would be thrilled to get to have a job using a phone and a notepad, maybe even over dinosaur caretaker.

  • Melissa
    2019-12-08 19:46

    Cute story, would of given it 5 stars if it had not has so much evolutionary garbage in it.

  • Amie
    2019-11-17 17:02

    This was a fun free read. I highly recommend it for any kid interested in dinosaurs.

  • Susan Waltman
    2019-11-19 15:03

    Cute, fast read written in the late 50's I think.

  • Shannon
    2019-11-23 14:03

    Cute and fun read-aloud for kids. Evolutionary science base and definitely a picture of the 1950's era. My children all enjoyed it.

  • Yvonne
    2019-11-21 17:53

    A fun read with the kids.

  • Caleb
    2019-12-03 16:49

    i liked it

  • Wayne Walker
    2019-11-10 20:12

    Twelve-year-old Nathan (Nate) Twitchell lives on a small farm near Freedom, NH, with his father Walter who runs the local newspaper, the Freedom Sentinel, mother, and ten-year-old sister Cynthia. In the middle of June, one of their hens starts looking pretty queer and gets so big that she could hardly waddle. Later she lays the biggest egg that Nate had ever seen. It has a leathery shell and is as big as a mushmelon, measuring fifteen inches around and weighing three pounds and a quarter. What do you think finally hatches out of that egg one Sunday morning? Well, it isn’t a chicken. It is a dinosaur called Triceratops. As luck would have it, Dr. Oscar Ziemer, a paleontologist with the National Museum in Washington, DC, just happens to be vacationing in the area, staying with the MacPhersons down at the nearby lake, and has heard about the egg, so he asks to be notified when it hatches. Nate names the dinosaur Uncle Beazley, after his mom’s great-uncle John Beazley. The Triceratops begins to eat and grow—and eat and grow—and eat and grow, until most of the available grass in the whole neighborhood is gone. What will the Twitchells do, especially when the weather gets too cold for a dinosaur? Dr. Ziemer suggests sending it to the National Museum in Washington. But with the change from the quiet country to the busy city, what will happen to Uncle Beazley? I started liking this book as soon as I began reading it. Aside from a few common euphemisms (darn, gosh, golly, and gee), one use of the exclamation “My Lord,” and some references to tobacco use and a brand of whisky, the biggest objection that might be lodged against it is the evolutionary presuppositions undergirding the story. There are copious mentions of “millions of years ago.” While we creationists reject this hypothesized scenario, the vast majority of the world accepts it, and the book is fiction anyway, so with that understanding one can still enjoy the story. I did notice a couple of things about the book that I appreciated. Nate is told in no uncertain terms when he asks if they still have to go to church on the morning when the egg hatches that “there’s no reason to give up going to church just because we’ve got a dinosaur out back.” And the way Senator Granderson is pictured as wanting to get the federal government involved in nearly every aspect of our individual lives is certainly true to form.

  • Katie Fitzgerald
    2019-11-10 17:53

    This review also appears on my blog, Read-at-Home Mom.Nate Twitchell is shocked when one of his family's hens lays an enormous egg unlike any he has seen before. Once the egg hatches, Nate becomes immediately attached to the creature inside it and becomes determined to care for it himself for as long as possible. When the government eventually gets involved, Nate continues to act in the best interest of his new friend, all while experiencing firsthand an amazing scientific experience.This book takes a completely implausible premise (hatching a dinosaur from a chicken egg) and makes it fully believable. At every stage of the growth of the hatchling, the characters react exactly as ordinary people would when faced with the same set of circumstances. They are surprised, skeptical, and scared, but they also rise to the challenge of their unique problem and begin looking for ways to keep the creature safe while also gaining any scientific insights they can. The tone of the story is just detached enough to make it feel like a scientific report, but also emotional enough to help the reader understand Nate's fondness for the dinosaur, and his difficulty in letting him go as he ages. Though the story sounds ridiculous, it repeatedly resists becoming so, and the entire matter of the enormous egg and its contents is resolved without its ever becoming laughable.The Enormous Egg reminds me a lot of the Henry Reed books by Keith Robertson, mostly because of the narrator's stubborn approach to caring for his egg, and because of the strongly masculine flavor of the writing and the story. This would be a great family read-aloud, especially since dinosaurs tend to interest preschoolers as much as they do teens and adults, but it's also perfect for independent reading, especially for kids whose skills are advanced but who are not ready for the more mature content of some middle grade novels. It's a compelling story well told, and a new/old favorite for me.

  • Jesse Whitehead
    2019-11-09 18:13

    This is a book that I gleaned much enjoyment from as a child. The thought of having a dinosaur hatch in my own backyard seemed to make perfect sense to me. The fact that it came from a chicken seemed perfectly reasonable. I don’t think anything else about the story mattered. Just that there was a dinosaur and I could spend hours imagining having my own dinosaur that I could ride around and talk to.The story is somewhat weakened now by a number of factors. The most glaring of all is the fact that scientists no longer believe that the Triceratops existed. This has been happening with a number of dinosaurs that I learned about when I was little. I’m not really sure scientists know anything at all about dinosaurs anymore. That fact and the preposterousness that a millions-years-old genetic mutation would yield a healthy dinosaur from a chicken are all circumstantial to the fact that nothing happens. The story is all very idyllic and silly and lacks tension in any way. There are a few chapters where a senator is trying to get the dinosaur killed because he’s too expensive to feed and un-American. I think most senators would be laughed out of the building if they tried to make this a national issue. Beyond that there is no conflict of any kind.I suspect that, despite its inconsistencies with modern scientific ‘knowledge’ this book would still be enthralling to children – especially the kind that like dinosaurs. It doesn’t hold up well for adults.