Monday, August 31, 2009

Maverick Books and "Hank the Cowdog"

Hank logo
This summer, one of the first review products received by the TOS Crew was a package from Maverick Books. Some of you may be familiar with Hank the Cowdog, and his adventures on the ranch, with his perceived side-kick Drover. If not, you may be in for a few leg-slappin' belly laughs. Hank considers himself the head of ranch security, and takes his job fairly seriously. If your children are insightful, they will soon catch on that Hank is more of a Barney Fife than an Andy Griffith, which is the source of much of the humor.

The Crew received:
Tales and Tunes from Hank the Cowdog CD $3.00
Hank's 8th Adventure: The Case of The One-Eyed Killer Stud Horse $4.24
Hank's Tornado Game $12.99

Here is a link where you can listen to John Erickson's performance at the PA Homeschool Convention. This will give you a good idea of who John Erickson is, and what Hank the Cowdog is like.

The Tales and Tunes CD has little excerpts from some of the stories, along with some fun music(mostly bluegrass). Some portions made us groan, some had a little language that I didn't care for (like the occasional "Heck", "Gosh" and "Dern" which is language that isn't used in our home). A lot of the humor is on a jr. high level, so keep that in mind... there are families that find it a "hoot", and others that find it mildly offensive... not passing judgement, just giving you information... :) I will admit that I am not terribly likely to play it too much until my 2-year old is beyond his "repeat-everything-he-hears" stage.... like say when he is about 4 or 5... Just in time for his brother to be at that jr. high level. ;)

Hank #8

The Case of the One-Eyed Killer Stud Horse is likely to have your kids howling with laughter with its "Stream-of-dog-consciousness" conversation and humor. Similar to the Tales and Tunes CD, there is some language that some will find suspect, but it is never glorified or overly condoned.... it mostly just holds true to what one might expect to hear on a ranch. Likewise, there could be some valuable teaching points in the messes that Hank gets himself into with his frequent poor choices. All in all, my kids seem to enjoy these books, and when I occasionally pick one up to read myself, I tend to find myself chuckling here and there as well.
Tornado game
Hank's Tornado Game is a fun little fold-up travel game (With space for the included bonus cassette tape, if you happen to still have a tape player around.. ;) ) reminiscent of Trouble, Sorry, Ludo, and Parcheesi. If you are familiar with these games, then you will have a good idea of how the play will go. Rather than the typical 4 pieces, there are only 3 pieces (Hank, Drover, and Junior, a buzzard). Play is directed with a clever spinner (I like the way that it attaches, and is so compact... very nice!). This is fun enough and compact enough that it has been traveling with us in our car almost all summer.

If you would like to see what others on the TOS Crew have to say about Hank, don't forget to pop on over and visit a blog or two... ;)

There are many more stories (Both hardcopy and audio) to be discovered..... Happy Reading~

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