Read Harry and the Terrible Whatzit by Dick Gackenbach Online


When his mother goes to the cellar and doesn't return right away, Harry shoves aside his fears to search for her and confronts the terrible two-headed whatzit....

Title : Harry and the Terrible Whatzit
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780899192239
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 40 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Harry and the Terrible Whatzit Reviews

  • Ann
    2018-11-08 03:26

    I was so excited to find this at a library sale, some 20-ish years after the last time I read it.This book fascinated me as a child! As the kid who always would pour over the illustrations long after the words on the page had been read, I was intrigued and engrossed by the Terrible Whatzit and every detail of its appearance. And after looking at it again, I can still see why! But, I suppose I'm getting ahead of myself...Harry is scared of the basement. It's dark and damp and it smells, and he just knows there is something terrible down there. But, despite his pleas to the contrary, his mother ventures into the gloom because she needs a jar of pickles.But then, what will Harry do when his mother doesn't return?! Will he be brave enough to go and rescue her? And will his mother *ever* believe him about the terrible Whatzit that lives in the basement?There are some great lessons here (without feeling like lessons!) about overcoming fear, and "the thing to fear is fear itself." And a sweet little add-on about parents actually listening more than maybe it appears that they do.I have to say, had I come to this book as an adult I don't think I would have found it quite as fascinating as I had as a child. And a part of me is a little unsure about Harry's use of "violence" as a means of extricating the Terrible Whatzit (some broom swatting and nose pinching is all, really very mild). But, the fact that this didn't bother me or adversely effect me as a kid seems like I'm just being overly picky. Besides, I do think that certain books just hold a "certain something" that will enthrall kids that maybe adults fail to see, which is why I probably would have given this five stars as a child, but will give it four as an adult. Still, I'm holding onto the copy I bought, and it will hold a special place on my bookshelf :)

  • Nicole
    2018-11-01 03:50

    Because sometimes your mom doesn't believe you...and sometimes she looks like a grown-up Thelma from Scooby Doo.Because cellars always smell.Because illustrations don't need any more than brown, orange and white.These are only some of the reasons I am glad to have discovered this book.

  • Erica
    2018-11-10 04:43

    I loved this book as a kid with a love that bordered on freakish. I think I was attracted to the idea of going down to the scary basement where the monster lived...and finding a door that goes out to the yard where the mom is picking flowers, or whatever it is she's doing out there.I don't know that it helped me overcome any of my fears but, man, it was an awesome book.

  • Jill
    2018-10-17 09:42

    This has been one of my favorite childrens books since childhood. Harry is terrified to go in the cellar, but when his mom doesn’t reappear from a visit down there for some pickles - it’s time to get brave.The illustrations are detailed but in all orange, white, black and gray. It sounds unappealing, but it works so well to bring attention to the story. Maybe it’s nostalgia making it beautiful to me but I don’t think so. Every child has some fear and reading about Harry’s makes one’s fear less scary. If he can fight his I can fight mine!Harry’s bravery and the surprise ending make this book one I read over and over decades ago and then read over and over to my children once I became a mother. I could look at the Whatzit and read Harry’s confrontation with it over and over. It lends itself well to fun voices and who doesn’t love a book like that??

  • Molly
    2018-11-13 06:30

    The less afraid Harry is the smaller the Whatzit gets. A bit scarier than what's being published these days though.

  • Michelle McBeth
    2018-10-17 04:44

    SUMMARY: Harry is afraid of the cellar. He warns his mother not to go down there, but she doesn't listen. Harry waits and waits, but his mother doesn't return. In order to save his mother, he gathers his courage, and a broom, and goes down the steps to find his mother. There he encounters a scary Whatzit. Harry is frightened, but his concern for his mother overshadows the fear. He beats the Whatzit down in size until he is no longer afraid and continues his search for his mother.ILLUSTRATIONS: The illustrations are beautiful in their simplicity. The colors consist of brown, orange, white and black which definitely exemplify the drawings of the time period this was written (late 1970s). The little boy is adorable, but the Whatzit is downright scary!THE GOOD: I can't believe I never read or heard of this story as a child. It is an enjoyable read about a boy who literally conquers his fears in order to find his mother. Once he realizes there is nothing to fear, the cellar has no hold over him anymore. This book has humor in it which is fun. The story line is creative and I loved the ending.THE NOT AS GOOD: The Whatzit is a very frightening looking creature. You can get a sense of how scary it is from the cover. I would not recommend this book for very young children who are trying to overcome fears as I think it would only add to those fears! But for slightly older children who are not too easily scared, this book still carries a good message about overcoming fears.AGE RECOMMENDATION: Ages 6-8 (5 year old as well for the less easy to scare child)

  • Courtney Canino
    2018-10-25 06:33

    The main characters of this fiction book are Harry, his mother and the monster in his basement he calls a Whatzit. The point of view is third person and it would be best for primary school aged children. The setting of this book is mainly in Harry's basement. The plot of this book is that one day Harry, who is about 8, is in his kitchen with his mom and she says she is going in their basement to fetch something. After not returning for awhile, Harry gets worried and decides to go look for his mother in their basement. This is no easy task for Harry but he is scarred of what monster could be in his basement. As he finally makes his way down to the basement he sees a terrible monster called a whatzit. The monster is huge and grows with Harry's fear. Once Harry realizes that he can make the monster smaller by just ignoring it and not being afraid he does so and the monster gets so small he disappears. He then finds his mother who went outside in the garden. The main idea of this book was not to let your fears control your life. I would recommend this book because it shows once you get over your fears they do not seem like such a huge problem. My personal reaction was that I thought it was very brave of Harry to go to the basement in the first place, because it was the first step in him getting over his fears. Concluding statement: Do not let your fears control you.

  • Lisa Overberg
    2018-11-08 08:43

    A book about overcoming your fears and not letting them control you. When Harry's mom goes to the basement and doesn't return, Harry goes in search of her despite his fear of the terrible two headed whatzit monster that lives down there. He sees the monster and it grows as he becomes more afraid, but then realizes if he ignores it and acts unafraid it shrinks, until he ignores it so much that it gets so small and disappears.Interest LevelGrades K - 2Grade level Equivalent: 2.6Lexile Measure®: 380LDRA: Not AvailableGuided Reading: J

  • Mallory
    2018-10-22 05:42

    The book, Harry and the Terrible Whatzit, is about a young boy afraid of his house cellar because of the monster that might have captured his mother. The themes of this book are scary, adventure, and funny. The genres are fantasy and picture books while the ages are kindergarten through fourth grade. I gave this book a 4 out of 5 stars because overall, it is a humorous book on a little boy and how he conquers his fear of the basement.

  • Bvlmc Buchanan Verplanck Elementary School
    2018-10-24 08:46

    Learning to confront your fears is a scary thing, but when it comes to those we love we always seem to find the courage as Harry learned in this story. Harry didn’t want his mother to go into the basement where the Terrible Whatzit lived. Yet when his mother doesn’t come back, Harry musters the courage to go downstairs, confront the Terrible Whatzit and rescue his mother. A humorous twist at the end makes for a fun surprise ending.

  • Cathy
    2018-11-01 05:32

    When his mother goes to the cellar and doesn't return right away, Harry shoves aside his fears to search for her and confronts the terrible two-headed whatzit.I read this so many times to my own kids - I can't even imagine how many times. We even nicknamed our cousin "Sheldon Parker" after a character in the story.

  • Anna Wendling
    2018-10-25 04:23

    This is a cute book about Harry, a little boy, who believes there are monsters in the cellar. When his mom goes down to get pickles and doesn't come back up, Harry panics and runs down to find the monster behind the furnace. Harry has to find a way to get the monster to leave and to find his mom. This is a good book for children Preschool-1st grade. It talks about conquering fears and bravery.

  • Jesse Ann
    2018-10-24 09:41

    My 6 year old niece instantly fell in love with this book and the entire thing memorized after one day of demanding it read over and over again. I have to give a 5 star rating to a book that inspires such passion in a new reader.

  • Brianna Toepfer
    2018-10-28 03:24

    The one thing I remember about the first time this book was read to me was how much it scared me. But yet my 5 year old brother loves this book. This book is great at encouraging children to let their imaginations run wild.

  • Molly Lamson
    2018-11-11 10:47

    William said he liked the mom and the boy, but not the terrible whatzit ... ;) Mom thinks he liked it much more than he let on... he couldn't take his eyes off the illustrations all the way home from the library ;)

  • Kathryn
    2018-10-31 09:47

    A terrific story that tells how facing what your afraid of makes it shrink, especially in the basement!

  • Paula
    2018-10-23 10:35

    When his mother goes to the cellar and doesn't return right away, Harry goes down to search for her and confronts the terrible two-headed whatzit.

  • Laura5
    2018-11-07 03:24

    Another of the Bud's "book club" homework books for Kindergarten

  • Roland
    2018-10-18 06:46

    Good for Halloween storytime, but that's about it.

  • Dayna
    2018-11-11 07:35

    Very cute. Harry attacks the physical form of his fear and it shrinks. My kids love it!

  • April
    2018-10-25 09:40

    This is one of the cutest little kids books. I got this when I was learning Spanish in high school and loved it.

  • Carrie Mclaren
    2018-10-18 11:46

    A "message" book that's also funny and dark. My 4yo loves it and so do I.

  • Jamie Tedesco
    2018-10-22 03:33

    Super cute story about a child overcoming a dear of a monster in his cellar. This would be great to read to children to help discuss fears and how to overcome them.

  • Laurie
    2018-11-14 09:28

    Picked this one up at the library book sale on vacation in Lincoln City.

  • Rae
    2018-11-13 11:47

    This was a childhood favorite! I love this book

  • Caitlin
    2018-11-09 09:46

    Harry and the Terrible Whatzit by Dick Gackenbach (1984)

  • Rainey
    2018-10-26 09:40

    so fun and kooky. very short though.

  • Zach Mott
    2018-10-21 06:24

    My out-and-out favorite book as a child. This is one that every kid should own and every parent should read to/with their children.

  • Andy
    2018-11-08 09:44

    just rediscovered this childhood favorite!

  • Amanda Coppedge
    2018-10-24 10:42

    A childhood favorite.