A Rosette for Maeve? (Glenmore Valley)

Lisa O’Sullivan lives on a beef farm with her younger brother, Joe, and her mum and dad. It’s show time in her village and, this year, Lisa has a big challenge ahead of her. Her dad has put Lisa in charge of showing their new Belgian Blue calf, Maeve. This calls for a lot of hard work and dedication on Lisa’s part, because Maeve has a mind of her own. Maeve already thinks she’s a supermodel, and she wanders off on her own and ends up in the fashion tent! Can Lisa ever get Maeve to perform for the judges?

Welcome to a new series, Glenmore Valley. One of two recently released stories, this one is utterly delightful. Full of laughs and true-to-life situations, there is plenty of action to hold interest. McQuinn depicts life on a farm with great accuracy and joy, without creating an idealised and unrealistic view. The children are very real, with genuine concerns. As with the other title, Colm’s Lambs, this book allows for a good view of life on the farm, which is something that many children never get to see. Echoing the humour of the text, the illustrations by Paul Young add much to the fascination and enjoyment in this story. A perfect introduction to farm life, if you’re not a farmer, this is also a great and realistic read for children growing up on farms… an area that is frequently overlooked when telling children’s stories. Wonderful.