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SOUPERCHICKEN by Mary Jane Auch

SOUPERCHICKEN

By Mary Jane Auch (Author) , Mary Jane Auch (Illustrator) , Herm Auch (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: April 15th, 2003
ISBN: 0-8234-1704-2
Publisher: Holiday House

What do you call a chicken who saves her aunty chickens from the soup factory? That’s right, one “souper” chicken. At first it appears that young Henrietta’s reading habit gets her into trouble in the Auchs’s (The Princess and the Pizza, 2002, etc.) latest poultry parody. Henrietta reads anything she can get her wings on and neglects her egg-laying duties. But since her aunties aren’t laying many eggs either, their farmer schedules a “vacation” for them. Being the youngest of the bunch, Henrietta is kept behind and regretfully bids goodbye to her aunties, who think she’s being punished for all that silly reading. As the truck pulls away, Henrietta reads the back of it—“Souper Soup Company”—and realizes that her aunties are going on a one-way trip. Using her trusty reading skills, she finds the address to the soup company and manages to save some pigs and cows from a similar fate along the way. In a hilarious climax, the chickens end up at a vegetarian farm and Henrietta’s aunties finally understand the importance of reading. Though the writing is a bit heavy-handed and borderline preachy, the energy and humor can’t be ignored. The brightly colored collage-style illustrations demand attention—especially Henrietta’s big tortoise shell reading glasses. Reading teachers and vegetarians alike will appreciate the message and young readers will find lots to laugh about. (Picture book. 4-8)