Title: Adventures of Cow, Too
Publisher: Tricycle Press
Adventures of Cow is probably the silliest book I have ever encountered. And I love it.
Normally, I’m not a fan of the photographic picture books. It seems to me one of the most valuable aspects of a picture book is that a cow will look different illustrated by Mary Azarian, from a cow illustrated by Sandra Boynton, and it is good for the children to learn that both images are of a cow. It’s one of the first metaphysical lesson a child learns.
But Adventures of Cow is the exception to the rule. It chronicles the journey of a foam cow, Cow, as he tries to get home from a farm. But Cow is confused: he doesn’t properly identify the different farm animals – a dog is identified as “a bird” and a herd of cows is actually a herd of scary frogs. The photographs are very funny, and the text is simple, and the combination is hilarious. Children delight in the incongruity of a Goose described as a “honking cat” or a “herd of scary frogs” (actually cows). And Cow, though only a foam toy, who looks the same in every photograph, is wonderfully full of personality!
In the sequel, Adventures of Cow, Too! Cow goes to the grocery store because Cow’s Mom is sick (she’s a porcelain hippo, and her nose is chipped) (of course!). He has a lot of adventures buying apples and oranges, and ice cream, loses track of time, but makes it home successfully, where he and his family spend the evening watching T.V.
These are great to read aloud. Actually, they’re great for everyone: I gave Adventures of Cow to my sister for her 20th Birthday, and we were in stitches for a whole afternoon. But I also gave it to my goddaughter, and she and her sisters (ages 2-10) read it about fifteen times in one afternoon, laughing hysterically every single time.