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Author: Valeri Gorbachev

Illustrator: Valeri Gorbachev

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Publisher: Candlewick Press,

Material: hard cover

Summary: Oh, no! One of Mother Hen’s chicks is missing! Mother Hen and her friends search in trees and on the ground but cannot find him. Where can he be? This is a picture book story with a happy ending ... via a surprise twist.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, anytime reading, family reading, playtime reading, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read together: 3 to 6; read yourself: 6 to 8

Interest Level: 4 to 8

Reading Level: 2

Age of Child: Read with a 5-year-old girl.

Young Reader Reaction: My daughter picked out this book because of its title. She enjoyed looking for the little chick. She liked looking at the pictures of the Mother Hen and the other chicks looking different places for the lost chick. She said it was nice of all of Mother Hen’s friends to try to help find the lost chick. She liked how the animals in the book were all doing human jobs and dressed appropriately for the job. For example, the dogs were the police and dressed in uniforms. I was surprised she liked it so much but I liked watching her laugh when they find the chick.

Adult Reader Reaction: The ending is expected but has a fun twist! I enjoyed the story line. It was cute to watch the Mother Hen looking all the different places her chick might have run off to and seeing how the town's "people” helped out. The pictures were not overpowering; they helped the story along.

Pros: Bright pictures and fun characters complement this fast-moving story about a missing chick.

Cons: None.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is fun to read but once you have read it the plot is simple enough that even the younger ones will remember the story. You'll probably read it a few times and then your kids will want to move on.


Educational Themes: Although done with light humor, there is a serious theme you can draw out of this story: pay attention to where your parents are! Other themes include friendship, helping others in need, losing things and the feelings that go with losing something and finding something.

Literary Categories: Fiction - picture book, animal characters, humor

Date(s) Reviewed: May 2009

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