I am Cow, Hear Me Moo! by Jill Esbaum Book Review

I Am Cow, Hear Me Moo! by Jill Esbaum
Illustrations by Gus Gordon
Publisher: Dial
Release Date: May 15, 2014

Nadine is a cow and she isn't afraid of anything--or so she says. However, her lie comes back to bite her on the tail when her friends call her bluff and make her entire the The Deep. Dark. Woods. As the sun sets and Nadine gets lost, she finds that all hr boasting is for naught as she runs in terror, plummets off a cliff, and crashes into a stream. She also finds that although it was scary, it wasn't quite as bad as she thought it was.

Oh, this book was so good...until I got to the end. The illustrations were adorable, the rhymes quick and fun, and the storyline about a cow whose lies catch up with her was giggle worthy. Then, when Nadine returns to the farm...she keeps lying! Instead of fessing up, owning her lie, and telling the other animals that she had been scared but was glad her friends were there or some other nice "message", what we get instead is Nadine continuing on with the lie. Did she learn nothing? What are children supposed to learn from this? Don't get me wrong, I dislike didactic stories as much as anyone, but picture books, for the most part, are meant to teach things to children even if the message is something as simple as sharing. Or as big as love.

Perhaps the lesson lies in overcoming our fears or be careful what you boast. Perhaps there is no lesson at all, just an excursion into the woods with a few cows. I don't think kids will mind, but I am sure some parents would, which is why I write these reviews in the first place.