Boynton has a special talent for writing stories about and illustrating animals in a humorous, amusing way. Cows, pigs, chickens...oh, it's easy to identify one of her books from a random stack. Yes, that is part of her appeal. And now she has written an entire book about cows. That's right. Cows. I'm very excited to introduce the latest in children's cow literature, "truly outstanding in the field," Boynton's newest book, Amazing Cows.
Amazing Cows: Udder Absurdity for Children by Sandra Boynton. Workman Publishing (November 2010); ISBN 9780761162148; 96 pages
Book Source: Review copy from publisher
"The Thing About Cows" - "Much has been written about why cows are so widely admired. Or maybe nothing at all has been written about that. We forgot to check. ... In fact, what makes cows most amazing is that they don't have to actually DO anything to be amazing. They just ARE."
When you live in America's Dairyland, you're always up for reading the newest "moooooooooving" cow themed book. It's practically required. Amazing Cows showcases Boynton's trademark cartoon illustration style, but it is written for a slightly older audience, the children that have out-grown her toddler books. An entertaining mishmash of cow stories, poems, jokes riddles and comics with a few chickens and pigs thrown in, the book is billed as "Udder Absurdity for Children." That's putting it lightly.
The whole book is full of the oddly alluring, shake your head kind of humor that both kids and even adults will want to page through -- there's a cow riddle here, and a bovine joke there, here an udder, there a moo, every where a moo moo (oops, sorry, got a little carried away with the cow hilarity myself). And, not surprisingly, none of it is even the slightest bit factual. It's just plain clever funny.
Amazing Cows reads like a magazine with lots of little sections that don't really have much to do with each other except for the fact that they all discuss cows in some shape or form. First off and my daughter's favorite -- it includes barnyard knock-knock jokes, other cow jokes and even a limerick. My daughter also giggled at "The Four Stages of Metamoophosis." Udderflys are awesome! There are a number of short stories. The "Red Rover" one is the funniest and introduces 137 cows from North Dakota that play a game of red rover with three chickens. In the middle of the book is an Amazing Cow Comic Book, "Trouble on Zebllor." The cover shows that comic book character named Tad Humble in his superhero outfit. We're still trying to figure out what the comic was all about...something to do with a snore war. Cows, cows, cows. Frankly, it's a bit of a challenge to count all the cows in the "Find the Hidden Cows" spread, but if you have good eye-sight, make sure to take a glance at The Moo York Times on the bottom right corner and have a laugh at the name on the spotted piano.
Some the content in this book will likely be over the top of the average child's head. At first, I was a little worried what my daughter would make of the book. But once we started reading, she didn't want to put it down. We read it together cover to cover. She wanted more knock-knock jokes. That's her only criticism.
Can't have a review without a corresponding craft and activity! We made Puppet Udderflies from The Official Sandra Boynton Event Kit. (page 6) Our udderflies have given up fluttering. They prefer "cattle-pulting" around the house, instead.
Sandra Boynton Web Site
Workman Publishers - Sandra Boynton
Workman Publishers has graciously offered to give away a copy of Boynton's Amazing Cows.
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