Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer by Kelly Jones-ADVISABLE

Jones, Kelly, Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer. Pgs. 216. Random House, 2015. $16.99. Language: G, Mature Content: G, Violence: G

Los Angeles native, Sophie Brown is having a hard time adjusting to farm life in a new town. To help herself cope with her great-uncle and abuelita’s deaths, Sophie write them letters about her new life, caring for chickens, and her correspondence course in poultry care. Soon, she realizes that the chickens that keep appearing on the farm belonged-to her great-uncle, the owner of the farm her father inherited. She’s told by the correspondence course to keep them safe, but that’s easier said than done. After all, what chickens can levitate their own coop, become invisible, or turn enemies to stone? What’s her great-uncle’s chicken secret? Can she keep the chickens safe? Will she find a way to fit in in her new town? And why does the town's resident chicken expert, Ms. Griegson, seem intent on stealing Sophie's brood?

This unique, funny story is told through quizzes, letters, and newspaper clippings. The detailed, ink drawings reminiscent of Quentin Blake complement the author’s writing style well. Sophie is a fun, easy to relate to character with a dynamic personality. Intermixed are fun facts about chicken that will appeal to animal lovers. Although parts of the story drag on a bit, young readers who like humor, animals, and books about moving to new towns will enjoy this book. EL. ADVISABLE. Reviewer: Kira Moody, Youth Services Librarian, WHI Public Library. 

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