Bubba the Cowboy Prince: A Fractured Texas Tale
Ketteman, Helen. 1997. BUBBA THE COWBOY PRINCE: A FRACTURED TEXAS TALE. Ill. by James Warhola. New York, NY: Scholastic Press. ISBN 0590255061
2. Plot Summary:
This story is a delightful twist on the classic Cinderella tale. Bubba is a Texas Cowboy who is overworked an unable to make it to the ball until he receives help from his fairy Godcow. Bubba and Miz Lurleen live happily ever after and good triumphs over evil once again.
3. Critical Analysis:
Helen Ketteman’s use of voice and James Warhola’s whimsical artwork allow this twist of a classic Cinderella tale to stand out as an original. Look for the Fairy Godcow in each of the illustrations. Children will also enjoy watching the relationship between Bubba’s dog and Miz Lurleen’s poodle develop. The strong use of dialect and regional vocabulary make the characters real and believable, not to mention fun to read aloud. Bubba is an archetype for good and there is a clear sense of good and evil where the story ends happily ever after. Many motifs are incorporated where the cow turns into a fairy godmother, and helps transform Bubba into a fine gentleman on a handsome stallion. The resolution comes to a quick, satisfying end where Bubba and Miz Lurleen live happily ever after, roping, and cowpoking along.
4. Review Excerpts:
Reviewed in KIRKUS REVIEW: “A Cinderella parody features the off-the-wall, whang-dang Texas hyperbole of Ketteman and the insouciance of Warhola…”
Reviewed in HORNBOOK: “The western-style trimmings of the text and accompanying oil paintings are humorous but not enough to justify retelling a story that’s as overworked as poor Bubba.”
Reviewed in PUBLISHERS WEEKLY: “Just the ticket for buckaroos lookin’ for a good read.”
Other Cinderella stories: Jackson, Ellen B. CINDER EDNA. ISBN 0688123228
Lowell, Susan. CINDY ELLEN: A WILD WESTERN CINDERELLA. ISBN 0060274476
Louie, Ai-Ling. YEH-SHEN. ISBN 039920900X
Steptoe, John. MUFARO’S BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTERS. ISBN 0688040462
Pollock, Penny. THE TURKEY GIRL. ISBN 0316714147
*Compare/contrast other Cinderella stories to this one.
Read other fractured Texas Tales such as:
Lowell, Susan. THE THREE LITTLE JAVELINAS. ISBN 0873585429
*Use the Reader’s Theater script to act out the story and practice fluency.