Adding to Zondervan's much welcomed line of "I Can Read!" books is Crystal Bowman's My Cowboy Boots.
This jaunty level 1 early reader book is illustrated by Meredith Johnson (of the popular Gigi series) and is written in apt rhyme. It's the story of a little girl who loves her red cowboy boots and wears them whenever possible: While she eats, shops, swings, rides her bike, sings "Jesus Loves Me," attends church, and rides her stick horse:
"I wear my boots on Wednesday
to ride the rodeo.
I hop on my big pony.
Giddy-up;! Here we go!"
What I Like: This is a fun early reader for young children. Bowman is an expert with rhyme, and rhyme only helps beginning readers learn new words. Johnson's illustrations add a great deal of fun to text, showing a hard-playing little girl finding great joy in a simple blessing: her boots.
What I Dislike: Nothing, but it's important to note the Christian overtones of this book are subtle, confined to the brief mention of a Christian song and going to church.
Overall Rating: Very good.
Age Appeal: 4 - 8.
Publisher Info: Zonderkidz, 2008; ISBN: 0310715741; paperback; $3.99