When Farmer Fred forgets to feed his horse, bad things happen!
Farmer Fred snoozes in front of the television, surrounded by the detritus of a long night of snacking, leaving his horse to fend for itself in the barn. A mouse nibbles at the bag of oats suspended over the trough but attracts unwanted attention. The easy-to-read text warns the mouse: “Look out, mouse! Here comes the cat!” Soon, a snake, an owl, a weasel, and a fox are after the mouse, drawing the attention (and clatter) of the horse, dog, and chicken. This commotion wakes Farmer Fred and allows the mouse to escape. Lively ink-and-watercolor illustrations add humor and energy to this very simple addition to the I Like to Read series. The angry but funny faces of the animals chasing the mouse are just scary enough to hold attention, and the final scene, in which the mouse stands surrounded by Farmer Fred’s discarded snack foods, will bring knowing chuckles to careful readers, who will have seen the mouse sneak in. The bold, simple type, punctuated by many exclamation points, is easy to decode and mostly easy to see. Much of the text is reproduced against the night sky, sometimes in white typeface and sometimes in black, potentially posing a challenge for young eyes. However, the comfortingly repetitive and easy-to-predict text will please them.
Easy-to-read farm high jinks. (Early reader. 3-5)