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The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other StoriesThe Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories

by Tim Burton

Poetry - Classics List 2016-17

Caution! Secondary Only! Not suitable for younger readers!

So far we have received 23 reviews of The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories.

You can read them below.

olivia from Year 8, Ridgewood School:

this book is about many poetry stories. some are really dark, some are sad.howver the poerty in it is really good to rhyme some words is very difficult .howver this book is really thin . Some of the poems don't even last 3 lines. I liked this book because I don't relly like poerty books but this had an exeption; it pulled me in

Marks out of 10: 9

kaitlin from Year 8, Ridgewood School:

this book is a book full of short poems. some of the poems lasted a few lines but the words were powerful. it was a very deep book and it did make me want to read more because of the way it was written. overall i don't normally like poem books because they are sometimes boring but i read this one all in one go and it was good because it had some good description however i would only recommend to people who like deep books and poetry books because if you don't like those types of books you may not like this book because it may be boring for you.

Marks out of 10: 8

Cordelia from Year 7, Healing School - A Science Academy:

This book was really good but strange at the same time. I really enjoyed all the characters and their personalities. It reminded me of a film Tim Burton directed, it was called Mrs Peregrines Home For Peculiar Children. All the poems rhymed and that gave the poems more rhythm. I really liked this book and I hope any one who reads it does as well.

Marks out of 10: 8

Sophia from Year 7, Healing School - A Science Academy:

This wasn't my favourite book but that is probably because I don't normally read/write poetry. It was quite a short book compared to others I have previously read. Tim Burton is a great filmmaker so I was really quite excited to read a book of his. As everyone would imagine, it is a quirky book and pretty out of the ordinary. I would warn you, this book is funny but includes older language in some part. It was a good book and if you like Tim Burton then you are going to love this book!

Marks out of 10: 7

Georgia from Year 8, Don Valley Academy and Performing Arts College:

I really enjoyed reading this book as Burton showed the darker side of life with metaphorical phrases and terms, like 'Stick boy' He showed great contrast in problematic lives and the cruel worlds that the children he created were raised in. The poetry includes misfits, the unloved and the mentally challenged. He shows a child-like mind portraying sophisticated and mature instinct using his writing technique. Many younger children wouldn't understand and instead enjoy the pictures and the catchy names. I enjoyed this dark little poetry book and I greatly enjoy Burton's work, as it manages to capture mature content in a corrupted vintage child-like state.

Marks out of 10: 10

Anna from Year 8, Healing School - A Science Academy:

I really adored this book! I am such a huge poetry fan so I was so excited to try this.Ii'm not too keen on dark stories but to give something else a try was great for a change. Although I had fully devoured all of the poems in half an hour, I re read my favourites. I've never been a big Tim Burton fan but the way he wrote his poems were incredible. They were so clever and buried deep beneath the dark humour was a relatable story for everyone to interpret for themselves. It was such a strange book of poetry but completely fantastic. Each little verse was strange and wonderfully weird. Anyone that loves poetry or dark tales will avidly enjoy this. A great read.

Marks out of 10: 8

bob from Year 11, Richmond Hill Primary:

i like this book because it is very interesting with a lot of detail added into it

Marks out of 10: 1

Abigail from Year 7, Ridgewood School:

this book is the book for you if you like: poems, gross things, and emotions. As this book has all of them above. The poems are short that means you can finish a poem and you wont be in the middle of reading.the poems are sometimes emotional.

Marks out of 10: 9

Luke from Year 8, Ridgewood School:

I loved this book because it was a mix of comedy and sheer horror. It is a collection of short, and I mean short, stories about imaginary characters that are weird in their own way. There are many different pictures that describe the characters perfectly. This is definitely a secondary book because it has many inappropriate words in it.

Marks out of 10: 6

Denis from Year 7, The Armthorpe Academy:

1.When I was reading the book I was feeling kind of unconfortable because I remember that there was a women whitch I think gave a birth to a human octopus and her husband was a fish I mean what?! It was so weird. Thats why I said I was feeling unconfortable. 2.There was this girl too whitch could stretch her eyes in the pool. Really weird things in this book. My librarian said it was really weird too. Everyone said it. Woah I dont think i will ever read a book like this again.

Marks out of 10: 7

Tasha from Year 7, Ridgewood School:

Do you like: short poems, snappy poems, gross poems, disturbing poems, sad poems, funny poems, all poems. If so this book's for you! I recommend this to 12+ readers because this is very disturbing and gross. My favourite poem was Oyster Boy because it was funny, strange, unique and overall fantastic. All the short poems are about strange people. I also like the Staring Girl. Its hilarious and very unique. Personally, it was the first poem or extract or written/spoken piece about a girl who stared forever, won 1st place in a staring contest and took her eyes out to give them a rest. It was the first of the poetry books I read and I never really read poems before but it changed my mind. It made me realise that poem books can be unique and funny. I really enjoyed this poetry book.

Marks out of 10: 9

Ivana from Year 7, The Armthorpe Academy:

I think that this book is not for young children because the book has terrifying stories that can frighten them. I think the book is interesting.  All stories end with death.I don't like the pictures, because they are scary.

Marks out of 10: 5

jessica from Year 7, Healing School - A Science Academy:

This book was good because it had various stories in it and they all talked about different things. They were all short stories and so they were quick 5 minute reads. It was my type of book because I could understand what they were talking about and what the words meant . It had a good range of vocabulary and punctuation.

Marks out of 10: 9

isabel from Year 7, Healing School - A Science Academy:

I liked how the poems were different lengths and sizes. They were all about different things, but the way they were ordered in the book made it like one big poem with different sized verses. The characters were all interesting to read about and the pictures described what was going on. Each of the characters played a different role in the story that was told.The language was interesting and I could understand what it meant. The punctuation was effective; you could understand what was going on better with the the correct punctuation to go in the middle and at the end. A good thing was that it was easy to read and I was surprised how much I enjoyed reading poetry instead of a story. I would recommend the book because the poems appear connected and it is an excellent read. I would recommend this book to ages 9 plus.

Marks out of 10: 9

Alex from Year 8, Don Valley Academy and Performing Arts College:

I did engoy many of the poems throughout this book, however i thought some were a bit strange and to repetative.The reason i only gave this book a 7 out of 10 is because some of the poems became dull and boring meaning i lost some interest. Allthough i did lose some interest i still thourghly engoyed the book in general but i probably would not reccomend it to those i know as i do not think they would engoy the book like i did.

Marks out of 10: 7

katie from Year 8, Ridgewood School:

This book is so funny but a bit rude. so it is not appropriate for younger readers. I am not going to spoil it but my favourite chapter is called the robot boy

Marks out of 10: 9

Josie from Year 8, Ridgewood School:

This book has a series of poems that focuses on different teenagers and children who are extremely different from the normal. I found the book dark and mysterious to the point of almost disturbing. Each poem had a different twisted tale and although I can see the element of humour I found them strange. Having Said that, I did enjoy the book and found it very different to the normal books I read. I would recommend it to people who want to see poetry in a different light and want to read something strange and unusual

Marks out of 10: 8

Rachel from Year 7, Ridgewood School:

This poetry book is full of dark poems, along with somehow disturbing illustrations. However, the poems are very unique and left me addicted to them and I just couldn't put the book down! But I just want to warn you that this book is for secondary readers since the illustrations and poems are sometimes disturbing... But it is still an astounding read and I highly recommend this book for secondary readers!

Marks out of 10: 10

Keira from Year 7, Ridgewood School:

If you like: disturbing poems, gross poems, funny poems, sad poems and just poems as a whole then I definitely recommend this book. However, I suggest that only people from age 12+ should read this book because it can be disturbing and misinterpreted if you don't understand the words. I understood it and really enjoyed it so I recommend it with a 9/10

Marks out of 10: 9

Tessa from Year 8, Don Valley Academy and Performing Arts College:

I rated this book 9/10 because I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and I think that it is very well written. There are a lot of parts that could be classed as dark or disturbing so I definitely would not recommend this to younger readers.

Marks out of 10: 9

ellie from Year 7, Auckley Primary School:

I haven't read it all yet but I thought it was going to be a normal book but I still really like it my favourite so far is the stick boy and match girl in love

Marks out of 10: 6

Anna from Year 3, Ash Hill Academy:


Marks out of 10: 1

Benjamin from Year 8, Don Valley Academy and Performing Arts College:

in my opinion this book was to short even though it was intended to be. I also believe that the supposedly "humorous" part of it was in fact boring and I did not enjoy this book as much as would enjoy your average book. I have given this a six as I do not read these types of books and I think that somebody in a younger school would enjoy this type of book but not this specific one as it specifically says not for younger readers and secondary schools only. I believe that Tim Burton has clearly not thought his audience through.

Marks out of 10: 6


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