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This Is a Sea Cow
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This Is a Sea Cow

4.42  ·  Rating details ·  145 ratings  ·  53 reviews
When an imaginative second-grader writes a school report about sea cows, the subject is not happy with her portrayal. Sea Cow—or Manatee, as she prefers to be called—comes to life on the pages of the report and decides to defend herself against unflattering comparisons to set the record straight with fascinating facts about manatees.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published September 1st 2019 by Albert Whitman Company
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Average rating 4.42  · 
Rating details
 ·  145 ratings  ·  53 reviews

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Jun 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is brilliant -- funny and informative, with a unique format. I can't imagine a kid who wouldn't love it or a teacher/librarian who wouldn't want it in his/her classroom. It's a rare book that doles out nonfiction information in a way that feels like a treat. And kids will want to read it over and over. I do! ...more
Jun 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I am so sad my kids are now adults because they would have absolutely adored this when they were young. I think we learn best when facts are presented in a fun and funny way, and Cassandra Federman nailed it. By having a sassy manatee break the fourth wall and engage the reader with humor, we are likely to remember facts about them that we wouldn't otherwise. The illustrations are delightful and well-done. I love the mix of photos with art. It is just brilliant how the whole book comes together! ...more
Jolene Gutiérrez
Sep 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I adore this book! There is so much here for kids, teachers, and parents to love. As a librarian, I know my school community will have fun with Sea Cow. . .I mean, Manatee! The book includes both humor and some important facts about manatees, so that in and of itself might make it a good purchase, but the illustrations are what makes this book a must-buy! I'm not an artist, so forgive me if I use incorrect terminology, but the illustrations are a fun mash-up of book illustrations and real life-- ...more
Tina Shepardson
Sep 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was blown away by so many unique features as I read this adorably funny picture book. The pages show a report a student is writing about sea cows, however the sea cow is quite unhappy about the information and facts given. Later, the sea cow is compared to other animals and the humor continues. Facts about manatees are woven in throughout this colorful text that resembles that of a second grader's handwriting and illustration capabilities. Absolutely gorgeous with information on sites and orga ...more
David McMullin
Sep 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A perfect combination of simple, fun, and factual! The hilarious text and child-like art will draw in any young reader. And the star subject of this report couldn't be cuter. ...more
Sep 16, 2019 added it
Shelves: picturebooks
I am not exaggerating when I say that I have been waiting for a good picture book about manatees my WHOLE DANG LIFE and this book DELIVERS!!
Aug 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I love this book. It kills me. Read it.
Vivian Kirkfield
Sep 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Kids are going to love this book! Set up like pages of a homework assignment to find information about an animal that interests the student, this story keeps the reader engaged from the first page to the last. It is full of humor and heart - a perfect combination for a picture book. And I totally learned so much about sea cows! I can't wait to share this with my 10-year old grandson and 6-year old granddaughter...I know they are going to love it! ...more
Susan Berger
Sep 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Kid-perfect. From cover to beginning endpaper to final endpaper - (Yes they are different) this book is funny and informative with laugh-out-loud illustrations. This is one of those books your child will hand you to read with them over and over again and you will both have so much fun. I look forward to more from Cassandra Federman.
Hannah Stark
Aug 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If all informational texts could be written with this personality, humor, creativity, and kid friendliness my job as a teacher would be a thousand times easier! This is a Sea Cow is hysterical and begs to be read more than once. The illustrations are clean, playful, and super engaging. Kids will learn about manatees and laugh out loud at this book. It might even inspire them to do their homework or write an animal report just for fun! The two voice format of the book is really well done. I highl ...more
Gayle Krause
Sep 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a clever way to get a young reader's attention. The fun facts in a child's handwriting on notebook paper is original. Every child will enjoy reading these manatee facts and not even know they are learning. Recommended for early childhood classrooms. ...more
Wendy Gardiner
Feb 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: informational
This book cracked me up. The author used a compare/contrast format in a creative way to talk about sea cows (manatees). Good backmatter with extra information and conservation resources.
Jun 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
THIS IS A SEACOW swims somewhere at the intersection of non-fiction and metafiction. The super-cute title character just can't stay quiet about the less-than-flattering school report she's been drawn into. I love the design of this book. The kid handwriting style lettering is legible yet believable, and the school supply collage elements take the reader right to a creative kid's workspace. Plus, there are plenty of facts for manatee lovers of all ages. (Armpit milk? Who knew?!?) Pair with Jessic ...more
Marcie Flinchum
Jun 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a Sea Cow has a child writing a report about their favorite ocean animal. Throughout the report, the sea cow (aka manatee) makes side comments about the facts presented. It’s a mix of fun illustrations and humor. This delightful book will make you laugh out loud. (Plus you’ll learn about manatees while you’re reading.)
James Serafino
Jul 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The art and humor in this educational but fun and silly book is phenomenal. I loved every page from start to finish. I hope it is just the beginning of a wonderful series!
omg, this is hysterical. I ordered it and brought it home thinking it would appeal to X. It is written as a school report about manatees, with the manatee jumping in to help explain the story (ala Very Impatient Caterpillar and Panda Problem).
The visual setup is great, a mix of hand drawn pics and real objects (crayons, scissots, pencils, stickers). The font is actually childlike handwriting as are the drawings.
You learn interesting facts, like manatee milk comes from their armpits and they fa
Mirka Hokkanen
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is such a cute, funny and above all informative book on manatees. Many facts have been cleverly hidden in the funny illustrations. Kids will leave laughing, not even realizing they just learned a whole bunch of new things about an animal. I think we need one of these for all the animals. Great read for parent to their kids, and later for kids to read on their own. I feel like smaller kids 3-6 would enjoy the silly illustrations and fun facts, and then the older kids who can read would still ...more
Natalee Creech
Sep 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
You will fall in love with this book by debut author-illustrator Cassandra Federman which hilariously compares and contrasts sea cows and land cows while offering up interesting information about manatees. (Armpit milk?!) The sea cow being described in the report has many opinions about these comparisons and isn’t hesitant to share them. My favorite illustration is the sea cow pretending to be a mermaid. The ending leaves us wondering if there will be a companion book, and hoping that it will be ...more
Laura Roettiger
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I LOVED this book and can not wait to read it to my class! It’s the perfect marriage of adorable and funny! As a lifelong fan of cows, I love the way Federman juxtaposed sea cows and land cows! The illustrations are from the perspective of a child which adds to the awesomeness of this book! It’s written like a school report with the sea cow interrupting the girl writing the report. So clever and fun.
Julie Abery
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This Is a Sea Cow by Cassandra Federman is a fabulous read! The appealing book design resembles a school homework project in which the featured sea cow captures the reader with child-like humor, illustrations, and fun facts! This will surely appeal to lots of children and teachers alike! Great job! One for the library and classroom for sure.
B.J. Lee
Sep 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Fun and fact filled, this picture book is a delight! A sea cow objects to things that are being said about her in a school report until she can't take it anymore. Breaking the fourth wall, she takes over the class discussion. The illustrations are adorable, the pages full of childlike pictures and text written on wide ruled school paper. ...more
Richard Ho
Sep 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Never has righteous indignation looked so adorable! Cassandra Federman's hilarious debut dives into a fact-filled rundown of the manatee's most cow-like attributes. But the manatee has its own (very strong) opinions on the comparison. The art perfectly mirrors the doodles of a precocious and animal-loving kid, and the manatee's snappy rebuttals will have you laughing out loud with every reading! ...more
Cathy Mealey
Jul 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"Sea" how sweet and sassy a manatee can be when she is displeased with her portrayal in a second-grader's school report. Fiction, fun and facts blend seamlessly in this delightfully creative story that merits re-reading over and over! ...more
A.J. Irving
Sep 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: pb
This adorable book is guaranteed to make children giggle from the first page to the last. With hilarious illustrations and text, as well as engaging back matter, This is a Sea Cow is sure to be a family favorite.
Stephanie Lucianovic
Dec 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
On top of being informative, this is a truly delightful addition to the STEM picture book world. The illustrations and design are so engaging and the entire concept is adorable and brilliant.
Eileen Winfrey
We learn about manatees by the author (as an elementary school student) comparing "sea cows" to "land cows" while the illustrated manatee takes umbrage. Cute and quirky, I think this story will be better as a read-to-self than a read-aloud because of all the back and forth. The illustrations are especially fun and will inspire (I think) some DIY researching. ...more
Amanda Sincavage
Sep 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
There is so much to love in Federman's adorable debut about a manatee, a.k.a. a sea cow, that prefers not to be compared to a land cow! With a strong voice and a lot of humor, kids will fall in love with this metafiction presentation, including the easily accessible facts and illustrations! And bonus - great back matter and end pages! Laugh out loud funny! ...more
Cassandra Federman shares manatee facts through the lens of child's report on the subject as well as commentary from a manatee who elaborates on the information provided and makes faces at some of the less flattering descriptions. Cute illustrations in crayon, collaged with other objects make it appear that you're reading an actual report. Funny and informative. ...more
Cute concept: a child’s handwritten report interspersed with comments from the manatee, a hybrid fiction/NF easy to read fun. Bright colors, extra facts at the end, along with foreshadowing for the author’s next book. Illustrations may be a little busy with all the multi media stuff from the child’s craft box?
Christine Evans
Sep 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is so adorable! Feldman’s cute illustrations perfectly illustrate the displeasure the Sea Cow, sorry Manatee, has at being compared to a Land Cow. Back matter provides loads of fun facts for readers. Manatees might just be your kid’s new favorite animal after reading this book.
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