________________ CM . . . . Volume XXI Number 27. . . .March 20, 2015


Pirates Are Stealing Our Cows. (Race Ahead with Reading).

Martin Remphry.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2015.
32 pp., pbk., hc., pdf & html, $10.95 (pbk.), $21.56 (RLB.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-1331-9 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-1330-2 (RLB.), ISBN 978-1-4271-778-0 (pdf), ISBN 978-1-4271-7766-7 (html).

Subject Headings:
Humorous stories.

Kindergarten-grade 3 / Ages 5-8.

Review by Stephanie Johnson.

*** /4



Farmer Marchant stomped into the kitchen and shook the sand from his slippers. “I’ll go after those cow stealing sea dogs myself!” he growled, whisking the tablecloth off the table from under the teapot. Farmer Marchant dragged the cows’ water trough to the beach. He tied the tablecloth to a pitchfork like a sail. Mrs. Marchant handed him some sandwiches and pushed him off. “Make sure you bring them back in time for milking,” she called as he paddled with his shovel out to sea.


One morning, Farmer Marchant looks outside to discover that pirates are stealing his cows! When the police do not help because pirates only steal treasure not cows, Farmer Marchant decides he must go after the pirates himself. The farmer encounters more unhelpful people until he finally runs aground only to find that he has landed on the same beach as the pirates who stole his cows. Investigation ensues: will Farmer Marchant deem the pirates a bunch of thieving scallywags, or did they perhaps have a more honourable reason for stealing the cows?

      The text is part of the “Race Ahead with Reading” series of beginning chapter books for young readers which contain five short chapters and are fully illustrated. Pirates is a great addition to this series with its eye catching illustrations on every page and its accessible format. The text, which is in a large font, is split up by the pictures into short sections so that there are never any long, daunting stretches of text. The book also contains literacy tips in the end matter for parents to use when reading with their children, and, while some of the tips are more applicable to classroom environments, they are useful for parents to be aware of nonetheless. The illustrations contain an abundance of fun details and complement what is happening in the text to help reinforce the reader’s comprehension. The story is a fun one and contains numerous imaginative ideas such as the water trough made into a boat and the surprising identity of the pirate Captain. Pirates are Stealing Our Cows is a great book to help encourage a love of reading in children and give them a sense of accomplishment in reading longer chapter books.


Stephanie Johnson is a graduate of the Master of Library and Information Studies Program from the University of Alberta.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.

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