A Twisted Tale

Overview

Bailey Tarbell is in a pickle. A tornado swooped down and sucked all the animals on her farm up into the air. When it finally spat them out again, they were all mixed up. The cow now clucks and tries to sit on eggs, the cat chases the dog who hisses and runs up trees, the pig quacks, the duck moos, and the chickens are all rooting in the mud. What’s a farm girl to do? The vet is stumped, demonstrating proper behavior hasn’t helped, even hypnosis is a flop. But then–eureka!–Bailey gets a brainstorm to beat that ...
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Overview

Bailey Tarbell is in a pickle. A tornado swooped down and sucked all the animals on her farm up into the air. When it finally spat them out again, they were all mixed up. The cow now clucks and tries to sit on eggs, the cat chases the dog who hisses and runs up trees, the pig quacks, the duck moos, and the chickens are all rooting in the mud. What’s a farm girl to do? The vet is stumped, demonstrating proper behavior hasn’t helped, even hypnosis is a flop. But then–eureka!–Bailey gets a brainstorm to beat that tornado. She loads all the animals into the truck and heads for the carnival! After a wild ride on “The Twister,” the animals are all singing the right tunes again. But now Bailey is a little mixed up. . . .

After a tornado hits Bailey Tarbell's family farm all the animals are mixed up and it takes some creative thinking for Bailey to get things straightened out--almost!

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Fisher's (Fifty-Five Grandmas and a Llama) farm-girl-versus-tornado story veers off into new, hilarious territory. "The wind howled like a prom queen steppin' on a cow patty," and after the twister picks up Bailey Tarbell's farm animals, it drops them to the earth transformed: the cow sits on the chicken's nests and the chickens wallow in the mud. In an attempt to set things right, Bailey and her parents (who favor the American Gothic duo) model nest-sitting and bone-chewing for their chickens and dogs, while a Freud look-alike counsels a wild-eyed cow on the couch. When hypnosis and psychotherapy fail to help her livestock, Bailey loads them onto carnival rides, including the Twister, which proves to be the antidote. Fisher's inventive, vivid paintings amplify the story's silliness. The artwork exploits every opportunity for humor with nonsensical perspectives, comic exaggeration and even careening typography. For instance, in the word "farm," plants sprout from the "f" while plowed fields comprise the "r." The mooing ducks, deliciously eccentric artwork and sly cultural references will entertain children of all ages. Ages 4-8. (May) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
PreS-K-A tornado strikes the farm where young Bailey Tarbell lives with Ma and Pa and it swirls her cat, dog, pig, cow, duck, and three chickens around and around. The creatures come out of it looking the same, but their actions and voices are all mixed up. The cow clucks, flies, and sits on nests, while the pig quacks and dives into the pond. Bailey tries every means available to get her animals back to normal-a psychologist, hypnosis, role-playing-but to no avail. Having attempted the conventional remedies, she takes her critters to the carnival, hoping the rides will snap them back to their correct behavior. The "Twister" finally does the trick, and the moo, oink, cluck, etc., are back where they belong. But oh, no, what's happened to Bailey? Striking type in varying colors, shapes, and sizes is a distinct part of the artwork and is well integrated with the illustrations. The energetic pictures, which appear to be a combination of watercolor, gouache, and pencil, add momentum to the already mobile text. Kids who get a kick out of animals that act in unexpected ways will enjoy this tale.-Maryann H. Owen, Racine Public Library, WI Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Fisher punches up a well-worn plot with vivid language and swirling modernist art that incorporates an equally wild hand-lettered text. After a twister that "howled like a prom queen steppin' on a cow patty" passes, young Bailey discovers that the farm animals have switched identities: the pig's quacking, the cow's sitting on the nest, the duck is chewing its cud. What to do? The vet shrugs, hypnosis fails, even psychoanalysis (visualize that cow on a couch) doesn't work. Finally, after a flash of inspiration, Bailey leads her mangled menagerie off to a carnival where a ride on (what else?) The Twister spins the animals back to their old selves. But Bailey comes out-curled. "Uh-oh," her American Gothic parents mutter. Readers who find Causley's "Quack," Said the Billy Goat (1986), or Most's Cow That Went Oink (1990) a trifle sedate won't have that problem with this unrestrained solo debut. (Picture book. 6-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375815409
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 5/14/2002
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.77 (w) x 11.28 (h) x 0.33 (d)

Meet the Author

Carolyn Fisher teaches illustration at the Alberta College of Art and Design. Her illustrations have earned recognition from the Society of Illustrators, among other awards.
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