cover image Bubba, the Cowboy Prince

Bubba, the Cowboy Prince

Helen Ketteman. Scholastic Press, $17.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-590-25506-6

Rustler lingo and illustrations chockablock with Texas kitsch make this ranch-spun Cinder-fella a knee-slappin' tale. Bullied by his step-kin, Bubba is stranded on the ranch while the rest of Texas attends the ball hosted by Miz Lurleen--""the purtiest and richest gal in the county""--who is looking for a feller who loves ranching as much as she does. While Bubba checks the herd, the sky grows ""darker than a black bull at midnight."" The thunderhead rolling in turns out to be his fairy godcow--haloed, freshly coiffed and wielding not a wand but lightning bolts. By the time the duded-up Bubba hits the shindig, Miz Lurleen has wearied of the last of her suitors (""another ten-dollar Stetson on a five-cent head""). After some fine do-si-do-ing, Bubba's duds turn to rags, but Miz Lurleen is infatuated. While spoofing Cinderella is not a new idea, Ketteman and Warhola's (Aunt Hilarity's Bustle) well-matched flair for hyperbole gives both the narrative and illustrations a one-two punch. Just the ticket for buckaroos lookin' fer a good read. Ages 5-8. (Nov.)