Monday, May 29, 2017

Free to Be... Tutu Me! Moo Moo and Mr. Quackers Present Moo Moo In A Tutu by Tim Miller

"Mr. Quackers, I have decided to become a ballerina!" Moo Moo announces.

Since Moo Moo is a large and clumsy white cow, that idea takes her staid buddy, Mr. Quackers, quite by surprise.

"But you have never taken ballet lessons!" points out the ever-practical Mr. Quackers.

To exhibit her zeal, Moo Moo executes a grand jete' over Mr. Quackers' prized bonsai tree.


"That last move is a little trickier than it looks, but I've almost got it!" says Moo Moo.

Moo Moo's credo is "I gotta be me!" and attired in pink leotard and tutu, the large bovine balletomane drags her doubtful pal along to the City Ballet, determined that her Terpsichorean talents be shared with the public posthaste.

"Try not to break anything," advises the sensible Mr. Quackers prophetically.

But it's not in Moo Moo to look before she leaps. She sneaks backstage and hides behind some scenery, waiting for the perfect dramatic moment to make her balletic debut, which comes with the full corps de ballet on stage.

"She spins! She leaps! She flies...!" cries Moo Moo.

"Brava!" cries the loyal Mr. Quackers.

The rest of the dance troupe and the patrons in the orchestra seats flee as Moo Moo makes an unceremonious crash landing in the middle of the bass drum in the pit.

"I think I am going to retire while I'm at the top of my game," Moo Moo remarks.

Tim Miller's brand-new Moo Moo in a Tutu (A Moo Moo and Mr. Quackers Book) (Balzer and Bray, 2017), introduces another pair of unlike and unlikely friends to the picture book pantheon peopled by odd pals like James Marshall's George and Martha, Mo Willems' Elephant and Piggie, and  Arnold Lobel's Frog and Toad. The sardonic and sensible Mr. Quackers is the perfect foil for the impulsive and tempestuous Moo Moo, a fact which Miller points up in his witty thought balloons. While the premise is certainly preposterous, Miller's seriously silly illustrations carry off this story of a quixotic cow and a mild-mannered mallard who share a sweetly enduring friendship in the first of his proposed series.

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