In another philosophical outing from Lucas (A Letter for Bear, 2013), a goat repels all comers from a rugged peak, then finds its claim of ownership a hollow one.
“Not your rock,” proclaims the kerchiefed goat repeatedly, driving off in succession a gaggle of other goats, a huge golden bird, a bear, a pack of wolves, and even a small songbird. “GO…AWAY!” But having yodeled, danced, and huddled beneath the stars on a cold night, the goat finally realizes its error: “Alone.” Down springs the goat, changing its message to “Our rock” and touching off a brisk race up the steep mountain that ends with a playful twist. The locale isn’t really specified, but along with an open, arid-looking landscape, Lucas renders his blocky illustrations with geometrically patterned borders and an orange-y palette for a Southwestern flavor. Of course the theme is universal, not to mention a frequently chosen one for toddler-level stories. Still, along with inviting a broader consideration of the ins and outs of ownership than the usual toy-oriented run of “sharing” titles—many of which even “share” the same title: Mine!—this outdoorsy epiphany offers a more peaceable resolution than Jon Klassen’s Hat fables.
A rocky climb to wisdom. (Picture book. 3-6)