Roy's Ranch
by G.F. Welch

"Roy has big windmills that get water from under the ground. The water goes into big tanks."

The narrator, a middle child in a family of five, goes with his siblings and parents to visit Uncle Roy who owns a ranch in the countryside. While there, the children enjoy the unique aspects of life on a ranch. From sleeping in an RV camper or tent to having outdoor campfire food, the change of pace keeps all the children interested and excited. Their days are spent tending to, petting, or keeping their distance from all the animals on the ranch, depending on their size and how dangerous they are. Eventually, the slower country life starts to bore the children, and the narrator’s older brother John wanders away, only to end up lost and missing. The family’s concern leads to a search party for John, who may not be as far away as they worry he could be.

For children who live in a rural environment, the sights and sounds of this story will probably be familiar. City kids, however, especially those with interest in farm equipment or animals beyond just cats or dogs, will find this book to be a novelty and will undoubtedly love the bright, soft, full-page illustrations and exciting wildlife waiting on nearly every page. This story is all about wholesome family fun, and while John’s tale can be a cautionary one about wandering off in places you’re unfamiliar with, even the resolution of his journey is one that will light up the eyes and imaginations of children. Ideal for read-alongs or a short bedtime story, this story will resonate strongly with children who want an exciting change of pace in their lives.

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