Toddlers (Ages 1 – 3)
One night, while the pigs and chickens are sound asleep—KABOOM!—Farmer George’s Moo Cow disappears! A low-down Space Cowboy has whisked her off to a galaxy far, far away. What’s this sweet cow to do now, forced to become the Wild Beast Earthling Moo Cow at the Inter-Galactic Rodeo? Get ready for Thacher Hurd’s zany trip to Planet 246 and back!
Rodeo by Roxie Munro
This lift-the-flap, fold-out book contains fifty flaps to lift, plus a unique rodeo event on every brilliantly colored page. See the Grand Entry Parade, Saddle Bronc Riding, Steer Wrestling, Cutting Competition, Mutton Busting, Calf Scramble, Barrel Racing, Calf Roping, Bull Riding, and a Square Dance with a cowboy band to round out the fun.
Potato Joe by Keith Baker
This fresh adaptation of the classic “One Potato, Two Potato” nursery rhyme is a counting adventure and rollicking good time rolled into one. Spunky leader Potato Joe and his nine spuds pals count up to ten and back down again, all while playing games and meeting up with other garden friends – they even go to the rodeo!
Picture Books (PreK-K)
Armadillo Rodeo by Jan Brett
When Bo spots what he thinks is a “rip-roarin’, rootin’-tootin’, shiny red armadillo,” he knows what he has to do: follow that armadillo! Bo leaves his mother and three brothers behind and takes off for a two-stepping, bronco-bucking adventure. Jan Brett turns her considerable talents toward the Texas countryside in this amusing story of an armadillo on his own.
The Fat Stock Stampede at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo by Dotti Enderle
When Jake accidentally unlatches the gates of all the animal pens, it’s only a matter of minutes before chaos and hilarity take over Reliant Stadium. Heifers, chickens, rabbits, and pigs spring from the pages as livestock of every kind run wild around the rodeo. Just as everything seems hopeless, Jake devises a crafty and creative plan to herd up the livestock and save the show from disaster.
Buckamoo Girls by Ellen Chavez Kelley
This rollicking, read-aloud Western asks the question, “What if cows could be cowgirls?” One day in the pasture, just chewing on cud, Joanna and Susanna imagine themselves as the fun-loving Buckamoo Girls. The Buckamoo Girls ride through the Wild West roping steers, sharing a meal out in the open air, and dancing “by the light of the moooooon.”
Early Readers (Grades 1-3)
White Dynamite & Curly Kidd by Bill Martin, Jr.
As Curly prepares to ride “the meanest bull in the whole United States,” his nervous daughter Lucky watches and encourages her dad.
When two best friends compete in a mock rodeo at school, they learn that winning isn’t everything.
Cowboy Up! by Larry Dane Brimner
This adorable rhyming book, great for beginning readers, presents a cowboy’s day at the rodeo.
Children’s Fiction (Grades 4-6)
Clabbernappers by Len Bailey
King Krystal of Elidor has a serious problem: Sarksa Pirates have captured the Queen! Desperate for her return, King Krystal summons a hero from the Dream Machine. Enter Danny Ray, the best dang rodeo cowboy in Oklahoma. The only problem? He’s only an eleven-year-old boy—not quite the hero the Elidorians expected.
Piper Reed, Rodeo Star by Kimberly Willis Holt
Piper’s parents are going on vacation to France without the rest of the family. What rotten luck! Still, Piper always looks on the bright side. The Reed sisters will be visiting their two sets of grandparents in Piney Woods, and Piper is determined to have four adventures. By working in a grocery store, listening to a girl named Tori’s scary stories, and lassoing a calf, Piper comes close to reaching her goal, and learns that sometimes the best adventures are the most unexpected ones.
Rodeo Queen by Marci Peschke
When the rodeo comes to town, Kylie Jean decides she wants to be the Rodeo Queen! To do that, however, she must learn a few rodeo tricks.
Teen Fiction (Ages 12 & up)
All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy
This is the tale of John Grady Cole, who, at sixteen, finds himself the last in a long line of Texas ranchers, cut off from the only life he has ever imagined for himself. With two companions, he sets off for Mexico on a sometimes idyllic, sometimes comic journey to a place where dreams are paid for in blood.
Cowboy Ghost by Robert Newton Peck
The year is 1924, and the place is Florida’s dusty and rugged “long country.” Sixteen-year-old Titus Timothy MacRobertson—”Tee”—can saddle up a wild mustang and round up stray beefs on his father’s ranch with the best of them, but does he have what it takes to make it on a grueling cattle drive through the unpredictable Florida wilderness? Battered by a storm, then caught up in a roaring stampede, Tee is ripsawed by the raw edges of ranching. But he manages to hang proud until fate lands one final blow, and Tee must find the courage to become the man no one but his brother, Micah, ever thought he could be.
A Small White Scar by K.A. Nuzum
Will can see his future stretching out before him, just as clear as the plains that lead to La Junta and the first-place prize at the rodeo—he will become a man, a cowboy with a life of his own. But his twin brother, Denny, follows, bringing memories Will would prefer to leave behind.