I Am Cow, Hear Me Moo!

26 Jun

18667815I Am Cow, Hear Me Moo! written by Jill Esbaum and illustrated by Gus Gordon (2014)

Nadine is a cow who is not afraid of anything, at least not until her friends take her up on her brag. Starla and  Annette nudge her into the woods to prove her bravery. Nadine finds out that she isn’t afraid of the woods, as a matter of fact she kind of likes the baby birds, the blackberries, and the pinecones. Climbing the highest tree, Nadine bellows “I am cow, hear me mooooooo!” over the valley below. Pretty soon it starts getting dark. Starla and Annette are ready to go home, but Nadine is having too much fun. She leaves her friends behind to explore a cave. However, the cave is dark… and there’s a pile of bones in there! Nadine hurries out, only to find her friends have gone on without her. And now she is lost in the dark woods alone. When something tickles her rump (her tail), she is so frightened she shoots like a rocket through the brambles and bumps and gallops right off a cliff, landing in a creek below. And guess who’s there? Starla and Annette have been lost in the woods too. They think that Nadine has found them. Nadine knows she’s not a hero, but how can she tell her friends that she was lost and afraid too? So Nadine lets them believe that she has rescued them. Starla and Annette have a big hero’s party for Nadine with balloons and cake and huge sign they made themselves. They also tell everyone their story and sell tickets to nightly excursions in the woods with Nadine as their guide.

Jill Esbaum’s story is written in an easy to read rhyme. And the humor is naturally integrated in the rhymes. She make Nadine a character readers will love despite her flaws.

Gus Gordon’s illustrations are happy and silly. Nadine and her friends each have their own personalities. Another thing I enjoyed looking for on each spread, were the scraps of newsprint-type text scattered in the pictures.

I realize that Nadine suffered from false-pride, but I like her spunk! I like how she faces her fears, (sort of) and comes out better for it at the end. I think even young readers will see right away that what she was most afraid of in the woods was her own tail, and will enjoy the humor of Nadine’s misguided adventures. I wonder if she will ever admit to her fears, or if she will learn to overcome them by returning to the woods?

4 Responses to “I Am Cow, Hear Me Moo!”

  1. Patricia Tilton June 27, 2014 at 12:05 PM #

    What a great story. Couldn’t help but think of the lyrics to Helen Reddy’s song “I am woman hear me Roar…” Many themes to discuss with kids in this book.


  2. Donna L Martin June 26, 2014 at 8:57 PM #

    Funny, but I just read that book to my summer camper kids…cute story!

    Donna L Martin


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