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My Life As A Chicken    by Ellen A. Kelley & Michael Slack order for
My Life As A Chicken
by Ellen A. Kelley
Order:  USA  Can
Harcourt, 2007 (2007)
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Daninhirsch

Pauline the chicken does nothing but lay eggs in her chicken coop, day in and day out. One day, after spying the farmer looking at recipes for chicken pot pie, she runs away.

The reader is along for the ride as Pauline narrowly escapes a fox's dinner plate, is captured by pirates, and is carried away by a hawk while riding in a hot air balloon. Children will echo the cheer, 'Pauline, Prevail' as she manages to dodge one horrible fate after another. Ultimately, Pauline finds herself safely ensconced in a petting zoo wrapped in the loving arms of a child.

The rhyming text begs to be read aloud: 'Has Farmer hatched a crafty plan to throw me in a frying pan? / I'll be his special of the day at Cock-a-Doodle-Doo Café!'

The drawings are wonderfully comical and exaggerated. The animals are quite expressive, and amusing details are sprinkled throughout the pages. A cute one is the letter 'P' decorating the top of a chicken pot pie. The colorful pages start off as dark hued, then brighten considerably by the end, paralleling the outcome of the story.

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