Cover image for Don't feed the coos!
Don't feed the coos!
1st ed.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 27 cm.
Added Author:
A cautionary tale in which a little girl must find a way to escape an insatiable flock of pigeons after sharing some bread with one.


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The dynamic team behind Llama Destroys the World returns with a laugh-out-loud tale about the dangers...of feeding pigeons!

When you see a coo, you will be tempted to give it a treat.
Coos are adorable, peaceful, kind of silly.
If you feed one, they will ALL come...

So begins Don't Feed the Coos , a cautionary tale that details the fallout when a little girl decides to share some bread with a coo (aka pigeon). From the park to home to the arcade to karate practice, the coos follow the generous-but-foolish girl who didn't heed the warning. Because when you give a coo a crumb...the entire population of coos will come! But fret not: our spunky little heroine will discover that even the biggest of problems can be solved with a little determination.

In the grand tradition of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie , Don't Feed the Coos reminds us that the most disastrous of reactions can come from the most innocent of actions. Jonathan Stutzman and Heather Fox deliver another ridiculous and hilarious story, sure to delight fans of The Bad Seed and I Want My Hat Back .

Author Notes

Jonathan Stutzman is an award-winning independent filmmaker and writer of books for children, including Llama Destroys the World and Tiny T. Rex and the Impossible Hug . When he isn't writing, Jonathan loves books, playing with his puppy, exploring, and watching old black and white movies. Jonathan lives in the wilds of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and as you read this, he is probably writing something new.

Heather Fox is an illustrator of stories for children, including Llama Destroys the World . Her art is filled with quirk and dashes of whimsy that is created in both doodle and digital forms. When she isn't creating, she is probably drinking a hot cup of coffee, eating Chinese food, or chasing down her dog (Sir Hugo), who likes to steal her socks. She lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

Married collaborators Stutzman and Fox (Llama Destroys the World) present the darkly comic--and maybe even existential--hazards presented by a whole flock of pigeons ("coos") in this send-up of cause-and-effect titles such as If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. "If you feed one"--a child stands with a bag of bread, beguiled by a small gray coo--"they will ALL come." Quickly surrounded, the child is tailed by coos ("through the park,/ down the street.../ Even at karate lessons") who never stop eating and poo with impunity ("coo poos covering everything"). "No matter what scheme you cook up," the narrator cautions as a variety of "Go Away" signs are installed, "your plans. Will. FAIL." Should the child capitulate ("Just accept your fate..../ Give them names./ Knit them scarves"), or could it be that someone who truly loves the coos is missing them terribly? Fox's graphic illustrations echo the text's giddy rhythms, with the pigeons styled, Willems-like, as pert, wide-eyed, always-in-profile graphic motifs that skip, flit, and, yes, poo prodigiously across the pages. Ages 4--8. (Feb.)

Kirkus Review

If you give a coo a breadcrumb....While not a cumulative story like Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond's picture book about a mouse and a cookie, Stutzman and Fox's latest collaboration does function as a silly cautionary tale of sorts: When the young protagonist of color fails to heed the text's advice and gives a coo a breadcrumb, all heck breaks loose. The titular "coos" are pigeons, and like Mo Willems' bird, they have one-track minds. Single-mindedly intent on getting ever more crumbs after the depicted child feeds just one coo, a whole flock follows the increasingly alarmed protagonist "through the park, down the street, all the way HOME." This kid just can't shake those birds! Avian havoc ensues in the clean-lined, stylized cartoons and then heightens as, "to thank you for feeding them, the coos will leave poos." If it's true that being pooped on by a bird brings good luck, Stutzman and Fox's protagonist accrues some serious great fortune in the next spreads, which will undoubtedly provoke laughter among readers observing the bright white splotches that dot the pages like a most unappetizing sprinkling of popcorn. If you can't beat 'em, join 'em ends up being the poor, splattered child's tactic, until a final return visit to the park reveals someone who's been missing the coos ever since they left.Coo-coo storytime fun. (Picture book. 3-7) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

Pigeons: they're cute, they're ubiquitous, they're hungry. The duo behind Llama Destroys the World (2019) team up for another hyperbolic tale of absurdity that begins with a girl feeding a pigeon, or coo, as they're known in the story. This innocent gesture quickly gets out of hand as she is swarmed by a park's worth of coos, all demanding food. Cue the silly escapades! The story's manic energy is captured in its simple digital illustrations, which employ clean lines, vivid colors against white backgrounds, and a cartoonish style. Second-person narration further adds to the drama ( You will try to escape. They will follow you. ), which rapidly escalates. The birds do indeed follow the girl home (and everywhere else), leaving copious coo poo in their wake and steadily pushing her to the breaking point. Resigned to her feathery fate, the girl takes her flock on a walk to the park, where she finally discovers a solution to her coo-nundrum. This is a sure winner for the preschool set and a worthy companion for Mo Willems' Pigeon.--Julia Smith Copyright 2020 Booklist