The Toughest Cowboy: Or How the Wild West was Tamed

Written by John Frank
Review by Nancy Castaldo


This is such a fun picture book illus. by Zachary Pullen. It’s a tall tale with lively and humorous text and character-oriented illustrations that are larger than life. The Toughest Cowboy exaggerates a bit of the Big Sky Country of the 1860s to tell the story of Grizz Brickbottom, the toughest cowboy ever to live in the Wild West. Readers will find that this here cowboy needs taming and taming he gets – from a poodle named Foofy!

Kids will love the gross jokes Frank uses to embellish the tale (“fetched a spur to scrape the gnats out of his nostrils”), and even adults will laugh at the metaphors and similes that pepper the story. Like any terrific picture book, the illustrations and the text dovetail perfectly. The Toughest Cowboy is a great addition to any tall tale collection and a great read aloud. Ages 4-8