My Farm Friends

( 1 )


Is there anything cuter than a little lamb or playful piglet? Farm animals are fascinating, and they are full of surprises, too. Naturally, cows make milk- but did you know they need to drink a bathtub-full of water every day? And of course turkeys gobble- but sometimes they purr like cats. Wendell Minor's bright, bold artwork and jaunty verse celebrate the wonders of our farm friends, and a list of fun facts gives curious animal-lovers even ...

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Is there anything cuter than a little lamb or playful piglet? Farm animals are fascinating, and they are full of surprises, too. Naturally, cows make milk- but did you know they need to drink a bathtub-full of water every day? And of course turkeys gobble- but sometimes they purr like cats. Wendell Minor's bright, bold artwork and jaunty verse celebrate the wonders of our farm friends, and a list of fun facts gives curious animal-lovers even more to enjoy.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Minor (Look to the Stars) introduces readers to common farm animals, portraying them at close range in watercolor gouache paintings that outshine the narrative. Some entries have little substance ("Roosters crow all day long/ They say cock-a-doodle-doo/ When it's early in the morning/ Will you cock-a-doodle too?") while others mention more interesting tidbits (pigs roll in the mud to stay cool, since they don't sweat, and barn cats like to nap on other animals' backs). Well- tailored to a preschool audience, Minor's large-scale art trades some of the meticulous detail and sophistication of his previous work for lifelike (if idealized) animals that exude personality and a gentle old-fashioned feel. There are splashes of visual humor: illustrating the fact that cows "drink a bathtub full of water" daily is a picture of a cow in a field drinking from a tub while a boy takes a bath. However, the verse's lack of consistent meter ("Lots of baby animals/ live on the farm too/ And guess what--/ They would all love to have/ A visit from you!") may contribute to a bumpy read-aloud. Ages 3–5. (Jan.)
School Library Journal
PreS-K—The award-winning illustrator brings his flair for vibrant, large-scale figures to this introduction to various farm animals. "Furry ones,/feathered ones, woolly ones too/Some things they do/Just might surprise you!" Even older children may not know that turkeys purr and dairy cows drink a bathtub's worth of water each day. Most of the facts are well-known, but the unfussy rhymes keep a cheerful flow. Minor's naturalistic watercolor and gouache paintings will win over readers of many generations with their retro ambience. Textures of feathers, wool, and barn siding beg to be touched. The minimalist backgrounds on the spreads focus on the animals. "My Farm Friends Fun Facts" is appended for additional tidbits about each of the featured barnyard denizens.—Gay Lynn Van Vleck, Henrico County Library, Glen Allen, VA
Kirkus Reviews
Inspired by childhood visits to family farms, Minor shares descriptions and facts about different farm animals and their behaviors. The interactive verse playfully engages readers, asking, "When it's early in the morning / Will you cock-a-doodle too?" or, "...suppose you tried to take a bath / And a cow got in your way?" Some of the rhymes and the rhythm are frankly awkward: "Turkeys can be very friendly / Sometimes sitting in your lap / They even purr when they're content / Just like a kitty cat!" Nevertheless, this book begs to be read aloud, individually or with a group. Multiple readings may be in order, as young listeners will want to visit this iconic farm over and over. Rich watercolor-gouache paintings fill each page and evoke a timeless feeling, at once recalling the past but perfectly at home in the present. Every scene is depicted realistically with a just a touch of anthropomorphism for child-friendly appeal. Whimsical facts at the back extend the information offered, and a list of Internet sources includes several farm and farm-sanctuary websites. (Informational picture book. 2-5)
School Library Journal
PreS-K—Listeners are greeted by chirping birds, a mooing cow, and a crowing rooster, and welcomed to the farm by narrator Tom Bodett whose soothing, folksy delivery enhances this charming picture book (Putnam, 2011) written and illustrated by Wendell Minor. The pace is slow enough for listeners to take time to pour over the luminous illustrations and consider the rhyming text that offers fun facts about common farm animals, with a humorous twist. Bodett's voice is especially well-suited to sharing wry insights like, "cows drink a bathtub full of water to produce milk every day, but suppose you tried to take a bath and a cow got in the way?" Bodett seems as surprised as listeners to learn that a content turkey purrs like a cat and that a horse often sleeps standing up. Bodett steers clear of singsong cadence, which is fortunate, as some of the rhymes are a bit awkward. The narration of each page is accompanied by its own quiet but jaunty tune performed by woodwinds and strings. Sounds of the featured animals are also audible. The book concludes with additional bits of trivia about each of the ten highlighted animals. Listeners will enjoy their experience at the farm and want to revisit often.–Constance Dickerson, Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library, OH
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780399244773
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
  • Publication date: 1/20/2011
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 619,951
  • Age range: 3 - 5 Years
  • Lexile: NPL (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 2.28 (h) x 0.44 (d)

Meet the Author

Wendell Minor is a graduate of the Ringling School of Art and Design. His work is in the permanent collections of the Library of Congress, the Museum of American Illustration, and the NASA Art Collection at the John F. Kennedy Space Center.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 12, 2012

    Highly recommend!

    I read this to my preschool class, and we all found joy in our time spent with this book on many levels - looking at the pictures, hearing and practicing the rhymes, and learning the fun facts. We were even able to play guessing games with each other on the facts and what animal could we be describing! Try it for certain. Truly.

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