Perfect Picture Book Friday – Fair Cow

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday, Everyone!

I realize that since it’s Inauguration Day I should probably have chosen a book on a related topic… but I already reviewed President Squid last March 🙂

Setting one’s sights on the State Fair isn’t SO far off setting one’s sights on the White House… and being pinned with a blue ribbon is kind of like being sworn in as POTUS…


Maybe it’s a bit of a stretch 🙂

But this is still a totally fun book and I hope you’ll get a kick out of it!


Title: Fair Cow

Written & Illustrated By: Leslie Helakoski

Two Lions (Amazon’s Children’s Publishing), August 2010, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 5-8

Themes/Topics: believe in yourself, be yourself, having goals

Opening: “Effie dreamed of being a state fair cow.  She loved living on the farm, grazing in the fields, and giving milk every day.  But still…she dreamed of being beautiful, of billowing blue ribbons, and big, bodacious barns.”

Brief Synopsis: Effie dreams of being a state-fair cow.  Petunia the pig gives Effie loads of helpful advice on how to become beautiful and win a ribbon. But in the end, it seems that maybe it’s best for Effie to just be Effie.

Links To Resources: Amazing Cow Facts For Kids; All About Cows For Kids And Teachers; Cow Coloring PagesShowring Ready: A Beginner’s Guide To Showing Dairy Cattle;

Why I Like This Book: Effie is cute and sassy, determined to make it to the fair, willing to follow Petunia’s (often ridiculous 🙂 ) advice to make her dreams come true.  The theme of the book isn’t new, but the execution is fun and fresh, and I think there’s always room for a book that encourages kids to be themselves and follow their dreams (er… come to think of it, I’ve written one myself, though it’s about groundhogs, not cows 🙂 )  The art takes the fun story to the next level of humor – colorful, fun and engaging, with plenty of silliness and great expressions.  And the repeating line of “Nothing a little {something} won’t fix” is used to great effect 🙂


Text and illustration copyright Leslie Helakoski 2010

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do 🙂

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out 🙂 ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! 🙂

29 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – Fair Cow

  1. ptnozell says:

    I think this is a Perfect choice for today, Susanna, as I’m off to visit my cow-loving daughter in Washington, where we’ll “stroll” together tomorrow in support of all we hold dear.

  2. Sue Heavenrich says:

    Love State Fair Cows – County Fair cows, too. And SO glad you chose this book instead of something related to presidents etc…. thanks for a fun post.

    • Susanna Leonard Hill says:

      Glad you enjoyed it, Sue! I love visiting the cows at the fair too. Especially the little ones 🙂 And actually, if you look at the cows’ hairdos, there is something vaguely reminiscent of something presidential… 🙂 🙂

    • Susanna Leonard Hill says:

      I know, Keila! What is it about cows that is so appealing? I actually never knew how sweet they were until I met some close up two years ago. They’re like big dogs = very cuddly – just, also, very wet in the nose area 🙂

  3. viviankirkfield says:

    Love the book, Susanna…and I have to tell you that I just got a super picture book idea while reading your review. I’m participating in Tara Lazar’s STORYSTORM…and I had no clue as to what to write for one of the title ideas I had written down…and now I do! THANK YOU!

  4. Leslie Helakoski says:

    Thanks to all the book enthusiasts who took time to comment. I’m happy to know so many of you love cows and that Effie still has fans. This was the first book I both wrote and illustrated so it is near and dear to my heart. (My fourth go at both author/ill is coming in March with Hoot and Honk.)
    Leslie Helakoski

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s