Book review by
Carrie R. Wheadon, Common Sense Media
Moo! Book Poster Image
Silly read turns kids into masters of social interpretation.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

With almost all the words being "moo," kids need to be careful observers of each scene and all facial expressions to determine what's really being said.

Positive Messages

The story shows there are consequences for bad behavior -- in a way -- but on the final silly page, the cow tries to blame the sheep for his actions.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The cow acts rashly and then tries to blame the sheep when he gets caught.

Violence & Scariness

The cow and his car careen off a cliff and smash a police car.


What parents need to know

Parents need to know that most of the words in Moo! are "moo" meant in very different ways. For example, when the adorable but irresponsible cow runs off with the farmer's car, "moooooooo!" is his exclamation as he's flying off a cliff and landing on a police car. Kids will need to look carefully at each scene and think about what each "moo" means, making it a fantastic book for kids on the autism spectrum or those with other social delays as they grow more slowly into their perspective-taking skills. For other kids, it's mostly silly fun with the opportunity to discuss why it's funny that the cow blames the sheep for his actions but, at the same time, that it's not the right thing to do.

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What's the story?

One little cow couldn't be more content chewing on grass until a farmer drives a car into her field and plops a "For Sale" sign on it. Suddenly the simple life isn't enough for her anymore. When the farmer is nowhere in sight, she hops into the car for an adventure. Driving is sheer joy at first, and she's all smiles and excited moos. But watch out for that turn! "MOO!"

Is it any good?

The cover image -- an adorably joyful cow in a red convertible -- says it all: Moo! is silly fun that will delight toddlers on up. It's also a great game of interpretation, especially for kids on the autism spectrum or with other social delays. Parents of those kids will really be able to dig in and talk about what the cow is thinking and feeling on each page, where his eyes are looking, and what they think will happen next. Moo! is such a fun way of developing these essential skills for school readiness and beyond.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about all the things one word can mean. How do you know when a "moo" is joyful or when it's fearful? Which clues do the scenes have, and which clues lie in the size of the text and the number of O's the author uses?

  • What should the cow tell the farmer at the end?

  • For kids with pets at home, how do different barks or meows mean different things? Can you tell when a dog or cat wants food and when it wants to go out?

Book details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love picture books and animal tales

Themes & Topics

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