cover image If the S in Moose Comes Loose

If the S in Moose Comes Loose

Peter Hermann, illus. by Matthew Cordell. Harper, $17.99 (48p) ISBN 978-0-06-229510-1

After the letters s and e detach themselves from the word moose, Cow’s friend Moose disappears. In order to reaffix the letters and get her friend back, Cow sets out to assemble the word glue. Once actor Hermann sets his first children’s book in motion, it runs like clockwork, though it takes a little effort to stay on top of the action. Cow takes the g from the word goat and replaces it with a b borrowed from a bear asleep in a chair; this turns Goat into a boat, and Bear into an ear. After Cow snags the c from chair, the neighborhood bull loses it: “Bear has vanished into thin air./ And what’s with the ear on that heap of hair?” Cordell (The Only Fish in the Sea) excels at drawing animals in the grip of powerful emotions, but always with the sense that they’re fundamentally decent creatures. Hermann’s verse never skips a beat, and the transformation of everyday objects into new things supplies a string of guffaws. Ages 4–8. [em]Author’s agent: Allison Cohen, Gersh Agency. Illustrator’s agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. (Mar.) [/em]