MINNIE & MOO AND THE SEVEN WONDERS OF THE WORLD

Denys Cazet, Author, Denys Cazet, Illustrator . Atheneum/Jackson $16.95 (134p) ISBN 978-0-689-85330-2

Though the stars of Cazet's popular beginning-reader series make a rather lumbering leap to a heftier, chapter-book format, loyal fans will no doubt willingly make the jump with them. When Moo overhears the farmer talking about selling the farm, she warns Minnie about all the things she might have to live without (cream puffs, espresso machine, hot tub and her "favorite red dress with the silver sequins and plunging neckline"). Outraged, Minnie dramatically replies, "We've got to do something.... I don't want to live like an animal!" The duo forms a plan to earn money to save the farm by leading the other farm animals on a paid tour of seven "wonders," including Minnie's "presidential bunion" (the pair insists it resembles George Washington's face). Cazet shapes some comical scenes (especially a debate debate about whether or not "thinking" is good or bad: "There is far too much thinking going on in the world and not enough doing," says Minnie; "That is a thought!" Moo retorts), yet a meandering plot and cumbersome dialogue too often cause his usually surefire humor to miss its mark. Still, the plentiful pencil illustrations serve up some droll images of this amiable cast of critters, and recent graduates to chapter books will find this entertaining, accessible fare. Ages 7-10. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 12/22/2003
Release date: 11/01/2003
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