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MINNIE AND MOO AND THE MUSK OF ZORRO by Denys Cazet

MINNIE AND MOO AND THE MUSK OF ZORRO

By Denys Cazet (Author) , Denys Cazet (Illustrator)

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-7894-2652-8
Publisher: DK Publishing

Cazet has struck a vein of precious ore in his “Minnie and Moo” series for beginning readers. These are simple books, but have a distinct, eccentric narrative that displays gumption, decency, and dreams on the cows’ part. The stories are also funny, accompanied by dry, witty artwork and a hint of naughtiness that refuses to swim into focus. Here, Moo sighs wistfully over the lack of heroes in the modern world. “You have been reading again, haven’t you?” demands her boon companion Minnie, neatly investing the act of reading with all the subversiveness it deserves. Moo points to Zorro as a role model: “Most days he just hung around. But on some days, he dressed in black and scared away the bad guys with a sword.” Moo’s enthusiasm is infectious and soon she and Minnie are dressing up as a pair of cow Zorros, complete with a sword tipped with a discarded tube of lipstick and a can of deodorant: The Musk of Zorro. They sally forth to do some good deeds around the farm. They liberate the chickens from the opportunings of the rooster; they neutralize two pair of the farmer’s long underwear flapping on the clothesline. This sparks some high farce between the farmer and his wife, who wants to know how the letters P U got written in lipstick on the long johns. She thinks it’s a vindictive neighbor. The farmer notes, “I thinks it’s those two cows on the hill.” A delightful, clean, and spare story brimming with comedy, typeset so that it can be read like free verse, such as this existential item: “Are we all just cows/waiting to get hooked up/to the electric milker?” (Easy reader. 6-8)