Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse

Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse

4.0 18
by Rebecca Janni, Lynne Avril
     
 

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In Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse, Nellie Sue does everything with a western flair. Whether it is cleaning up the animal sty (picking up her stuffed animals) or rounding up cattle (getting the neighborhood kids together for her birthday party), she does it like a true cowgirl. All she really needs is a horse. So when Dad announces at her birthday party,

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Overview

In Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse, Nellie Sue does everything with a western flair. Whether it is cleaning up the animal sty (picking up her stuffed animals) or rounding up cattle (getting the neighborhood kids together for her birthday party), she does it like a true cowgirl. All she really needs is a horse. So when Dad announces at her birthday party, “I got a horse right here for you,” Nellie Sue is excited. But when her horse turns out to be her first bicycle, it will take an imagination as big as Texas to help save the day.

Activities for Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse by Rebecca Janni

Editorial Reviews

Booklist
This entertaining picture book features a spunky protagonist, whose folksy narrative delivers a supportive message about the rewards of imaginative play.
Children's Literature - Sarah Maury Swan
Nellie Sue wants a horse and has it all planned out as to where she will keep her—in the garage—and what she will feed her—grass from the lawn—and where she will hitch her—by the mailbox—and where she will corral her—the front yard. On her birthday, Nellie Sue does all her barnyard chores in confident anticipation of getting her horse. She waters her dog, mucks out her hamster and rabbit cages, feeds the chickadees, and gathers grass for the horse she is certain to receive. Every time her mother or father asks if she needs anything, she points out that she needs a horse. She rounds up all her friends to come to her birthday party and then is faced with a big disappointment. Instead of a horse, she gets a shiny pink bike. Still, like all cowgirls, Nellie Sue makes the best of the presents. She pretends her bike is a horse and canters it down the road. Nellie Sue's charming story is written by an understanding horse lover. Reviewer: Sarah Maury Swan
Publishers Weekly
It's her birthday and Nellie Sue is hoping for a horse. Her parents have gotten enough hints: she wears cowgirl duds from head to toe, uses words like “moseyed,” drops her g's (as in “Yee-haw! We've got herdin' to do!”), and has elaborate plans for converting the family home into a barn and paddock. Instead, Nellie Sue gets a bicycle: “All eyes were on me, and I felt like I swallowed a hay bale.” Debut author Janni and Avril (Amelia Bedelia's First Day of School) clearly appreciate their heroine's fantasies, but don't always succeed in getting inside her head. Avril's pink-hued watercolor cartoons have a birthday-card geniality, giving little sense of either an internal drama or a romantic vision of life on the range. The extent to which Nellie Sue takes the bike-as-horse fantasy makes for some overly precious lines (“I walked over to her with my palm out flat so she could get a good sniff,” she says, approaching the bike), but readers should identify with her longing, as well as her powerful sense of imagination. Ages 3–5. (Feb.)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—Cowgirl wannabe Nellie Sue is convinced she'll get a horse for her birthday. In her imagination, she already is feeding, watering, lassoing, and riding her dream steed as she does routine chores on the big day. When her parents proudly present her with her new horse—a bike—she is taken aback but then gamely approaches "Beauty" and saddles up. As she and her bike survive a crash and repair, Nellie Sue finds her imagination is strong enough for her to see her bike as a horse and she happily pedals into the sunset. The child's fresh voice and twang will have children cheering as she starts out making the best of a situation and then finds she is perfectly happy with the outcome. The bright, sketchy, watercolor and ink illustrations are suffused with pinks and purples and capture a child who tries to live up to cowgirl ideals of helping others, looking on the bright side, and being strong. The lesson on dealing positively with disappointment is gently delivered. Perfect for one-on-one sharing or reading alone, this is a cowgirl story that readers will take to heart.—Marge Loch-Wouters, La Crosse Public Library, WI
Kirkus Reviews
City-dwellin', country-talkin' Nellie Sue, "a cowgirl from head to toe," wants a horse more than anything and fully expects to receive one on her birthday. As she tackles her chores-harvesting hay (grass clippings) and lassoing neighborhood kids for her party-horses reign supreme in her thought bubbles. She can't believe that by the time chili and beans are served she still hasn't got one. Finally, the big moment arrives. Her dad gives her a brand-new . . . bike. At first she feels like she "swallowed a hay bale," but she soon gamely accepts that wheels might do the trick in the indisputable absence of hooves. Avril's wonderfully freewheelin', loose-lined, cartoonish illustrations help tell the entertaining-but-not-extraordinary story. The opening spread hints that a trip to Frontier Town may have fueled her horsey fire, and, as she rides her bike into the sunset, the sky fades into saguaros and cowboy hats. The glittery stars and hearts on the cover may lure readers into Nellie Sue's pink cowgirl world, but it's her hopeful, unbroken spirit that'll win 'em over. (Picture book. 4-6)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780525421641
Publisher:
Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
02/23/2010
Series:
Every Cowgirl Series
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
122,765
Product dimensions:
8.70(w) x 11.10(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
AD650L (what's this?)
Age Range:
3 - 5 Years

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