WHO OWNS THE COW? by Andrew Clements


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Age Range: 4 - 8
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 Who owns the hefty holstein in the pasture? Children whose first thought is that Ben & Jerry are likely candidates will be forgiven. Is it the farmer who paid for the cow, or the little girl who adores the cow, or the milkman who benefits from the cow's products, or the artist who paints the animal? Each and every one has a special relationship with the ruminant beast, be it love or livelihood or inspiration. The text has a pleasant cadence, but framing the discussion of the cow in terms of ownership is far too abstract and philosophical for most readers, and will confuse them. Even as a low-profile broadside against the narrowness of property law, the critique is not pointed enough to bite and not clear enough to have meaning for children. Landis's folk art shows a sophisticated use of acrylics, in scenes populated by an affectionate bunch of bovine fans. Who owns the cow? Some readers will jettison the proprietary nonsense and just enjoy old Elsie for her own fine sake. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 21st, 1995
ISBN: 0-395-70145-7
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Clarion
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1st, 1995


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