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Where's My Cow?: A Discworld picture book for people of all sizes    by Terry Pratchett & Melvyn Grant order for
Where's My Cow?
by Terry Pratchett
Order:  USA  Can
HarperCollins, 2005 (2005)
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

This delightful picture book (by famed UK fantasy author Terry Pratchett) is featured in his latest Discworld adventure, Thud!. City Watch Commander Sam Vimes will do whatever it takes to read to one-year-old Sam at 6 p.m. every evening, 'because some things are important'. Read Thud! and you'll see what extreme measures this dad takes, despite being in the middle of trying to stop a cataclysmic inter-racial war.

Small Sam demands Where's My Cow? every bedtime, and both father and son enjoy making the noises and doing the actions of critters including sheep, cow, horse, and especially pig. Vimes wonder why his son's book is full of country animals when he's growing up in a city, where 'He will only see them on a plate! They go sizzle!' So he switches from the mythical farm and 'Where's my cow?' to Ankh-Morpork (the city they live in) and 'Where's my daddy?' Both Sams have great fun till Lady Sybil (mom) intervenes.

In his illustrations, Melvyn Grant does a fantastic job of contrasting the monstrous looking Discworld characters that Sam senior (a doting dad if there ever was one) meets daily, with the usual pastoral pastels. Though this picture book spoof might not be the best bedtime reading for infants other than Sam, it's a must for the multitude of Pratchett fans, with food for thought on what we teach kids about life's realities and a strong theme of paternal love and bonding.

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