Book Review: Helen Lester’s All For Me and None For All

Posted June 17, 2017 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews, Children's

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Helen Lester’s All For Me and None For All

All For Me and None For All


Helen Lester

picture book that was published by HMH Books for Young Readers on April 3, 2012 and has 32 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.
Illustrator: Lynn Munsinger

A standalone story about sharing for three- to six-year-old readers.

My Take

It’s a tale of a greedy hog of a “boy” who thinks he’s entitled to anything he wants, although it is curious that when Lester gets to the point of the story, it’s more about not being in such a hurry.

Munsinger beautifully uses watercolors and colored pencil with a very light touch with the pen-and-ink to create light-hearted and light-colored graphics. It’s the story I can’t get excited about.

Don’t get me wrong, the message Lester sends is a good one, I just don’t think that ending was emphatic enough. Gruntly’s about-face was too easy and too quick. And, yes, I think it’s important to apply the same rules about believability to children’s books.

God knows I’ve gone off about books that leap from one scene to another without connecting them, and children’s stories should be held to the same standard.

That said, Lester does demonstrate Gruntly’s greed with a suggestion of the others’ reactions.

The Story

Gruntly is a hog in every sense of the word who refuses to share anything and is quite happy to take anything.

When he comes upon the sign announcing the treasure hunt, Gruntly’s piggy eyes light up with his greed, as he intends to get to the treasure and have it all to himself.

The Characters

Gruntly, Hampshire, and Berkshire are pigs. Yorky is a little dog. Woolworth is a sheep. Cluck is a chicken.

The park ranger is in charge of the treasure hunt.

The Cover and Title

The cover has a white background with a pastel group of animated animals in the center. The hoggish Gruntly front and center is the focus of the story, and he’s stuffing his face as two pigs, a dog, a lamb, and a chicken look on in disgust.

The title is Gruntly’s very naughty attitude, All For Me and None For All.