The Dirty Cowboy

Amy Timberlake; Pictures by Adam Rex

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Download Image Amy Timberlake; Pictures by Adam Rex The Dirty Cowboy

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This ol’ boy needs a bath!

After he finds a tumbleweed in his chaps and the numerous bugs buzzing around him affect his hearing, the cowboy decides it’s time to head to the river. Once there, he peels off all his clothes and tells his trusty old dog to guard them against strangers. He takes a refreshing bath and emerges clean as corn – but so fresh-smelling that his dog doesn’t recognize him! Negotiations over the return of the clothes prove fruitless. A wrestling match ensues in a tale that grows taller by the sentence, climaxing in a fabric-speckled dust devil.

Amy Timberlake has inserted a Western twang into this tale of filth and friendship, and Adam Rex has found many creative means of bodily concealment in his expressive, comical paintings.

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Praise for The Dirty Cowboy

"Timberlake's keen comic timing and abundant western witticisms fit hand in glove with Rex's farcical golden-and copper-toned illustrations, which call to mind the tall-tale humor of Adam Glass...Transcending the cowboy-tale genre, this raucous romp should tickle bath-averse children everywhere." --Starred, Publishers Weekly

"[A] side-splitting double debut...Inspired by an anecdote passed down in the author's family, this cautionary tale should please all young readers with an aversion to soap and water."
--Starred, Kirkus Reviews

"Readers will revel in the tall-taling, sagebrush-flavored style, the malodorous situation and the slapstick...Rex's slickly highlighted figures have the gleeful grostesquerie of Mad magazine art...The compositions are creative and the scenes are rife with additional details...a rootin' tootin' good read." --Starred, Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"Told in descriptive language that rolls off the tongue, this story makes the most of a humorous situation. Filled with dusty reds and sundown bronzes of the New Mexico setting, the paintings have a gritty, sinewy look that matches the earthy tone of the tale...a fun look at life on the range." --School Library Journal

"Rex's rich paintings add sparkle to the story's dramatic telling with the attention to detail and humor that may remind some grownups of Norman Rockwell's early work. A simple, slapstick tale that is sure to elicit some giggles." --Booklist

Reviews from Goodreads


About the Author

Amy Timberlake; Pictures by Adam Rex

Amy Timberlake lives in Dekalb, Illinois, and Adam Rex lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This is the first book for both of them.

Amy Timberlake
Adam Rex

Copyright Suzanne Plukett
Adam Rex

Official Sites


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Available Formats and Book Details

The Dirty Cowboy
Amy Timberlake; Pictures by Adam Rex


Marion Vannett Ridgway Award, Parents' Choice Award Winner, Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books Blue Ribbon Award, GA Picture Storybook Award ML, Spur Awards - Winner


Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
August 2003
ISBN: 9780374317911
ISBN10: 0374317917
Picture Book
8 3/4 x 11 inches, 32 pages, Full-color illustrations throughout
Age Range: 4 to 8
Grade Range: p to 3 Information for Librarians

Information for Librarians

Lexile: AD840L
AR Quiz Number: 88665
AR Book Level: 2.6
AR Points: 0.5


From The Publisher

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

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