Monday, March 13, 2017

Review of "The Chick That Couldn’t Scratch" by Mary Jean Kelso

Written and illustrated by
Mary Jean Kelso

“The Chick That Couldn’t Scratch,” written and illustrated by Mary Jean Kelso is a cute story of a mother hen who had to have her own chicks. Although the farmer didn’t want any eggs to hatch, mother hen secreted away three eggs under the coop and sat on them till they hatched. Two of the three fluffy chicks squeezed out to the garden and learned to scratch for their food. The third chick stuck close to his mother, who made sure he thrived from the farmer’s grain. The little chick grew too big to squeeze out and join his siblings. And he still relied on others for his food. Finally, a wise rooster told him to “watch and learn.” This good advice enabled the chick to learn to forage and feed himself.

A prolific author, this is the first book Ms. Kelso has illustrated. The style is reminiscent of American Folk Art, which I very much appreciate. Each pleasing scene moves the story along in a simple, peaceful, and uplifting style. The artwork and the story will appeal to children, teachers, and parents. The message of watching and learning is a good one. As adults we have forgotten how hard won some life experiences were. This story is a simple reminder that sometimes we have to watch what’s happening around us and learn as we live. Highly recommended for teachers, librarians, classrooms, parents, and students ages 4 to 8.

Information on author Mary Jean Kelso is at

Her children’s books include these published with


Andy and the Albino Horse:Intro Andy and Spirit series Book 1

Reviewed by:

Penelope Anne Cole, Multi-Award Winning Author of  
Magical Matthew, Magical Mea, Magical Mea Goes to School, Magical Max and Magical Mickey, and  
Magical Max and Magical Mickey’s Big Surprise; 
In and Out, All ‘Round About – Opposite Friends; 
What’s for Dinner? and ¿Qué vamos a comer?

For Halloween: Ten Little Tricksters and Diez pequeños bromistas

New:  My Grandma and Me Coloring Book; 
 Coming Soon:  My Grandma’s Pink House

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