Farmer McFitt’s mischievous sheep have escaped! Who wants to stay on the farm when they could be shot out of a cannon at the circus or go surfing at the beach—they even pose as art in a museum! Can Farmer McFitt round up this rowdy bunch in time for a wooly surprise?

This rollicking, rhyming read-aloud will become a favorite counting and bedtime book for parents and kids. Bill Mayer’s energetic, expressive ...
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Farmer McFitt’s mischievous sheep have escaped! Who wants to stay on the farm when they could be shot out of a cannon at the circus or go surfing at the beach—they even pose as art in a museum! Can Farmer McFitt round up this rowdy bunch in time for a wooly surprise?

This rollicking, rhyming read-aloud will become a favorite counting and bedtime book for parents and kids. Bill Mayer’s energetic, expressive sheep are adorably silly, and his pictures are chock-full of hilarious details kids will love.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This amusing counting book features Farmer McFitt's sheep, who pole vault the gate and have a busy day in the city. While the format is familiar—one sheep stays behind at each location they visit—Beaty's (Firefighter Ted) smart couplets and Mayer's (All Aboard! A Traveling Alphabet) retro-inflected pen-and-ink artwork give the story its freshness. The illustrations are filled with enough humor to prompt requests for rereading and include plenty of jokes for adults as well. At the art museum, Dalí's wilted clocks are rendered as sheepskins while van Gogh's self-portrait is transformed into a sheep. Using a muted palette with pixilated cartoon textures, Mayer's illustrations are chockfull of action, adventure, and droll, rambunctious sheep who find their way to a baseball game, a movie theater, and the library ("Novels and poetry! All of it free!/ They nosh and they nibble from A down to Z"). The abrupt ending—it's unclear how or when Farmer McFitt found the sheep and accomplished his intended shearing, much less knit them new outerwear—is the only weak point in an otherwise comedic lark. Ages 4–8. (May)
Children's Literature - Jeanne Pettenati
Farmer McFitt is sleeping when Bam! his sheep make a break from the farm and set off to explore the world beyond. Adorable illustrations and the rollicking rhyming text make this counting book a winner. Readers follow Farmer McFitt as he sets out to retrieve the naughty lambs; first he finds 10 sheep, then nine, then eight, etc. until the last little lamb is following Mary into school, a clever tie-in to the nursery rhyme. It's all whimsy when the sheep are found at the zoo, the circus, a ballgame, a movie theater, an art museum, the beach, the library, the firehouse, and riding motorcycles around town. Of course, the farmer succeeds rounding up all his wayward charges, just in time to be sheared. This title is one that children will want to read (or have read to them) over and over. Not only for kids, adults will have fun with this one too. Reviewer: Jeanne Pettenati
School Library Journal
PreS-K—Farmer McFitts's sheep have escaped from the farm and gone to town to have some fun: "Ten frisky lambs run away to the zoo/to meet an okapi, a kind kangaroo." Brightly colored pen and watercolor spreads burst with action as they present a descending number of sheep cavorting in various venues—the circus, a baseball game, a movie theater, the library, etc. By book's end, Farmer McFitts has tracked down every last lamb, gets them all sheared, knits outfits for them, and falls exhausted into bed, surrounded by his recalcitrant and now-fashionable flock. This fresh counting book will have children busily searching for the naughty sheep while enjoying their antics.—Judith Constantinides, formerly at East Baton Rouge Parish Main Library, LA
Kirkus Reviews

Farmer McFitt has lost his flock of mischievous sheep in this comical, rhymed counting book that features densely detailed illustrations that beg for repeat visits.

Ten wayward lambs hit the town to avoid a shearing. As a countdown progresses, the rambunctious crew creates a ruckus at various locales, offering readers adventures for varying interests. They visit the ballpark, museum, beach and library, where "Four hungry ewes run off looking for snacks. / They roam the library, inspecting the stacks. / Novels and poetry! All of it free! They nosh and they nibble from A down to Z." Even the cinema is overrun, as the lambkins dress up as their movie genre of choice (western, comedy and period piece). Mayer populates his spreads with playful tableaux, enticing readers to explore each escapade and find (and count!) sheep. Done in pen and watercolor with an offset pattern to layer in color and texture, his simple, cartoony drawing style—reminiscent of the Thimble Theatre–era Popeye comic strip—is organic, spontaneous and skillfully controlled. All ends well as Farmer McFitt finds his sheep, knits the fleece and gets to stop counting sheep and sleep. The countdown is entirely textual—no numerals here—so it's not a teaching text, but it's plenty fun for all that.

Beaty's amusing text teamed with Mayer's humorous artwork is one frolicking romp through numbers and naughtiness. (Picture book. 3-6)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781442435537
  • Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
  • Publication date: 5/3/2011
  • Sold by: SIMON & SCHUSTER
  • Format: NOOK Kids
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • File size: 19 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

Andrea Beaty is the author of  Doctor Ted; Firefighter TedHush, Baby Ghostling; When Giants Come to Play; and Iggy Peck, Architect. As a kid, she spent her days being a detective, world explorer, movie star, and spy. Now, as a children's author, she spends her days pretty much the same way! She lives in the Chicago area. You can visit her online at andreabeaty.com.
Bill Mayer's work has appeared in major journal publications such as the New York Times magazine, National Geographic, Time magazine, Sports Illustrated, and the Wall Street Journal. He also created the Bright Eyes stamp series for the U.S. Postal Service, and has illustrated picture books such as All Aboard by Chris Demarest. Bill lives with his wife, a fellow artist, in Decatur, Georgia. For more information, visit him at thebillmayer.com.
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