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Shooting Star: Annie Oakley, the Legend

Shooting Star: Annie Oakley, the Legend

5.0 1
by Debbie Dadey, Scott Goto (Illustrator)

An account of the life and exploits of the sharp-shooting entertainer.


An account of the life and exploits of the sharp-shooting entertainer.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This tall tale about sharpshooter Annie Oakley bounces comfortably between facts and fiction. While it is true that Oakley shot candles out with single bullets and defeated the Grand Duke Michael of Russia in a match, she never shot craters in the moon or the points off a star, as she does in this spirited yarn. Dadey (Dragons Don't Cook Pizza) describes shooting the star with gutsy exaggeration and a down-home lilt: "The explosion was so loud it caused the Snake River to flow backward and it shucked corn in fifteen states." First-time illustrator Goto's Wild West characters match the mood to a bull's-eye. Robotic and carnivalesque, they look as if they've stepped out of the sort of amusement park shooting gallery where a well-aimed shot animates mannequins and starts a player piano. The smiling, bug-eyed animals and hyper-animated faces of Annie and her adopted father Sitting Bull give the far-fetched tale a joyous, larger-than-life feel. Ages 5-8. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Lisa Phillips
Annie Oakley was destined to be a sharpshooter from the time she was a baby spitting bullets from her cradle. As a young child, she helped support her family by hunting game and selling the meat in town. By the time she was a young adult, she had out-shot a world famous marksman and was the star trick shooter in Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. So goes this very, very tall tale (she even shot the point off a star!) of renowned sharpshooter Annie Oakley. Because the story is so greatly exaggerated, girls and boys alike, will find it riotous fun and fast paced. Reading a story about a female legendary figure is especially neat, since men are typically featured in these roles. Old West jargon and bold, expressive illustrations make the reader of this story want to yell "yee-haw" right along with Annie!
School Library Journal
K-Gr 4Annie Oakley is the subject of a number of biographies for early readers. This visually arresting story lifts her out of biography and into legend and tall tale. The folksy text and vibrant full-page illustrations, while remaining true to the facts of her life, exaggerate her remarkable skills and create a heroine as confident and brave as Anne Isaacs and Paul Zelinsky's wholly imaginary Swamp Angel (Dutton, 1994). From childhood, Oakley could spit bullets, hunt game, and shoot straight. She got hitched to the famous marksman Frank Butler, traveled to Europe with Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, and won every contest with her unbelievable shooting skills. It took a wagonload of powder, but she even met Sitting Bull's challenge to knock the points off a star and hit the moon (three craters were added), making her the best shot in the whole universe. Still, she never forgot her poor and humble beginnings and, until she died and became a shooting star herself, she helped children in need. Goto's exuberant, energetic, and subtly comical illustrations are perfectly matched to Dadey's rollicking tongue-in-cheek tall tale. The final page contains "The Truth" about the life of this remarkable woman, but there is truth, too, in the legendary quality of Oakley's exploits. A great book for reading aloud or for introducing children to a colorful historic figure.Shirley Wilton, Ocean County College, Toms River, NJ
Kirkus Reviews
A picture-book version of Annie Oakley's life that wavers between a fairly straight telling of the few known facts and tall-tale exaggerations that are both forced and silly.

As a baby, Annie is described as spitting bullets out of her cradle at the tin roof of the barn, frightening the cows so bad that Pa has to move the structure 15 miles down the road. A few years later, Annie hunts for food for the family, and pays off the farm debt after her father dies. Covered are her marriage to Frank Butler, her trip to Europe with Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, her meeting Queen Victoria, her outshooting Grand Duke Michael of Russia, and her legendary generosity. Mixed into those events are the tall-tale yarns, when she shot craters in the moon and blasted the points off a distant star. It's a hybrid approach, leaving readers without a real sense of what a genuine star Annie was. In his first book, Goto's glossy paintings, technically proficient, follow the bent of the story and also straddle realism and cartoon buffoonery, with limited success. He makes a burlesque of the facial expressions of Annie's audience, whose uniform astonishment begins to look static.

Product Details

Walker & Company
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
8.48(w) x 10.96(h) x 0.13(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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Shooting Star 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This Book Is very educational, I am a junior in high school and I live In Ohio about 4 hrs away from where this outstanding woman of history lived. Annie Oakley really is a Legend! I just wanna say this book helped me out on my U.S. History report!