cover image My Daddy Is a Cowboy

My Daddy Is a Cowboy

Stephanie Seales, illus. by C.G. Esperanza. Abrams, $18.99 (48p) ISBN 978-1-419-76081-5

When Daddy wakes this picture book’s young narrator before dawn, the two grin at each other: “Today, we get to ride together—just me and Daddy.” Taking Daddy’s motorcycle to the ranch where their horses live, the two observe the early morning quiet. The duo next brush and feed horses Power and Clover before saddling up (“If I’m lucky, people will see us ride and we’ll make them smile like the cowboys do”). Esperanza’s thick-stroked oil paintings depict the landscape and the duo’s early morning route (“We pass Mommy’s favorite coffee shop and the place where Abuelita sends money to her sister”), while the narrator’s father reflects on how riding makes him feels (“stronger, safer, and happier”). Together, the creators expertly capture the open feel of early morning alongside the beauty of one-on-one time in this visually immersive story about a child whose “Daddy is a cowboy.... And so am I.” Characters cue as Afro-Latinx. Ages 4–8. (June)