Review: Sophie’s Squash

Sophie's Squash

Sophie’s Squash

by Pat Zietlow Miller and Anne Wilsdorf

Find it at: Your Library | Your Local Bookstore

Published: Schwartz & Wade, imprint of Random House Kids (August 6, 2013)

Recommended Reading Age: 3-7

In a nutshell: Tis the season of pumpkins, gourds, and delicious squash! While pumpkins remain to be in the spotlight during this time, especially with the anticipation of Halloween in a few weeks, butternut squash may take rise in their popularity all because of one little girl named Sophie who found a friend among one in this new picture book, Sophie’s Squash.

On a visit to the farmer’s market, Sophie and her parents purchase a butternut squash. While her parents expected to cook it for supper later that night, Sophie has something else entirely in mind. The squash quickly becomes Sophie’s friend. She draws a face on it, names it “Bernice”, and the two become inseparable. Her parents keep trying to convince Sophie that Bernice is in fact a squash and that they will have to cook her soon, but Sophie won’t hear of it. Bernice goes with Sophie to the library, on regular trips to the farmer’s market, and plays in the garden. Nearing the end of fall, Bernice starts to go bad, so Sophie seeks the council of the man at the farmer’s market who sold her Bernice in the first place. He, in turn, gives her advice that teaches Sophie that sometimes the best friendships just need a little room to grow.

Sophie's Squash

I first saw this book reviewed by Travis from 100 Scope Notes back in September, and my first thought was “No freaking way. Pat Zietlow reads my blog!”

Well, I know that’s probably not the case, but the reason I thought that was because last winter Little L had a butternut squash friend named “Fwash the Squash”. I even wrote a short post about him HERE back in March. So, my instant reaction was that this story was about Fwash! Granted it takes months and years for a book to be published, but I thought it was pure serendipity that this book came about shortly after Fwash. While I was away in Seattle for library school orientation, I purchased Sophie’s Squash for Lorelei as a souvenir for when I returned home. We have been reading Sophie’s Squash as a part of our regular reading repertoire ever since. She loves it when my husband reads the story to her, because he exchanges Sophie’s name for Lorelei’s.

Fwash the Squash


Sophie’s Squash has inspired my daughter to plant a few butternut squash seeds so we can grow our own Fwash family. A fun story with a very important lessons in friendship, I wouldn’t be surprised if we see more Fwash’s and Bernice’s nestled in the arms of preschoolers around town.

Don’t take my word for it: “It’s the sort of story I can see just about any kid relating to, either because they are still like Sophie or because they can look back with a knowing smile. A nice addition to your fall read aloud collection.” – 100 Scope Notes

Extras: A few fun and free activities for Sophie’s Squash available from the Random House Kids website:

Make Your Own Fall Friend

How to Host a Sophie’s Squash Storytime

Source of book reviewed: Purchased at the University Book Store in Seattle, Washington. (Which has a wonderful children’s section if I do say so!)


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