The Horned Toad Prince

Category: Themes: , ,
In this hilarious spin on a classic fairy tale, a spunky cowgirl finds herself in a mess of trouble and is forced to strike a deal with a horned toad.
Price: $7.95
  • ISBN: 9781561455485
  • Publication date: 09/01/2010
  • Page Count: 32
  • Size: 10" x 9"
  • Age Range: 4-8


In this hilarious spin on a classic fairy tale, a spunky cowgirl finds herself in a mess of trouble and is forced to strike a deal with a horned toad.

Reba Jo loves riding all over the wild prairie and roping any critter unlucky enough to cross her path. But when her luck turns sour, she has to work with a horned toad to save her own hide. Reba Jo tries her darnedest to weasel out of her part of the bargain, but the clever horned toad won’t let her off the hook. In the end, she learns that a promise is a promise and words once spoken are not easily taken back.

Jackie Mims Hopkins’s sizzling southwestern retelling of the fairy tale “The Frog Prince” is complemented by Michael Austin’s vibrant, distinctive illustrations, which colorfully transport young readers to the untamed, dusty prairie.


Jackie Mims Hopkins


Jackie Mims Hopkins is a storyteller, a school librarian and a former teacher. She is the author of several children’s books, including The Three Armadillies Tuff and The Gold Miner’s Daughter. She lives in Texas.

Michael Austin


Michael Austin is a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, a creative director, and the illustrator of several books. He lives in Georgia.


“The unusual perspectives and broad humor of Austin’s over-the-top airbrush illustrations in shades of violet and gold capture Reba Jo’s comical disgust as she tries to wiggle out of her unpalatable bargain as well as the ugly toad’s insouciant charm as he connives his way free from his curse.” ―Publishers Weekly

“An entertaining version of ‘The Frog Prince’ with a Texas twist.” ―School Library Journal

“This is fun and thorough. Hopkins’ telling sizzles with southwestern panache…. Fractured fun at its best.” ―Booklist

“Richly hued illustrations add to the book’s raucous flavor…. This book allows for illuminating connections fo the Grimm text while recreating the main characters in a way that’s consistent with this truly American setting. With this retelling it’s clear, no two creatures were ever better suited to each other.” ―ForeWord Reviews

“Hopkins’ retelling has a fast pace and colloquial style that will pull in both listeners and readers.” ―The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books


Texas 2×2 Reading List ―Texas Library Association, 2001

Storytelling World Resource Awards (Honor, Stories for Young Listeners) ―Storytelling World magazine, 2001

Best Bets for the Classroom (Traditional Literature) ―Virginia Center for the Book, 2002

The Original Art ―Society of Illustrators, 2000

Georgia Children’s Picture Storybook Award (Nominee) ―University of Georgia, 2002-2003

Land of Enchantment Book Awards (Master List) ―New Mexico Library Association, New Mexico Council of IRA, 2002-2003

Show Me Readers Award (Nominee) ―Missouri Association of School Librarians, 2003

Virginia Young Readers Program (Nominee) ―Virginia State Reading Association, 2001-2002

Willa Award (Best Children’s Literature) ―Women Writing the West, 2001

Mockingbird Award (Nominee) ―Abilene Independent School District, 1999-2000

More Details

AR Level: 4.5
F&P: GRL P, Gr 3, Genre TL
Lexile: 670L
Themes: Fractured Fairy Tales, Frog Prince, Predicting Outcomes
BISAC 1: JUV012040 JUVENILE FICTION / Fairy Tales & Folklore / Adaptations
BISAC 2: JUV002220 JUVENILE FICTION / Animals / Reptiles & Amphibians
BISAC 3: JUV014000 JUVENILE FICTION / Girls & Women