Plano Reads: Donkeys

Hee-haw! We’re back on the farm for another book list, this time for some of our favorite donkey (and burros and mules, too!) stories.

This Saturday on our “Saturday Stories on the Farmstead” we are at the Heritage Farmstead Museum in Plano, Texas to have a storytime about chickens! Be sure to check our Facebook page at 10:30 a.m. on October 17 for the premiere. Check out our teaser below!

Whether you’re looking for a story to share or to learn something new, this list has you covered. You can see the book below and place them on hold in our catalog.

Picture Books

Little Green Donkey by Anuska Allepuz Request
Preferring delicious green grass to all other foods and refusing to try anything his mother suggests, Little Donkey switches to yummy carrots when his exclusive diet has an unanticipated consequence. 

Little Burro by Jim Arnosky Request
When Little Burro’s band of burros leaves her canyon, Little Burro does not want to follow, but she soon finds out that visiting new places can be fun. 

I Yam a Donkey by Cece Bell Request
Confusion abounds when a poorly spoken donkey says to a grammarian yam, “I Yam a Donkey!” 

Waiting for the Bibliburro / Esperando el Biblioburro by Monica Brown Request
When a man brings to a remote village two burros, Alfa and Beto, loaded with books the children can borrow, Anna’s excitement leads her to write a book of her own as she waits for the Biblioburro to return. Includes a glossary of Spanish terms and a note on the true story of Colombia’s Biblioburro and mobile libraries in other countries. Parallel text in English and Spanish. 

Donkey-Donkey by Roger Duvoisin Request
A little donkey, unhappy that his big ears stick straight up, asks other farm animals for advice on how to improve his appearance. 

Rude Mule by Pamela Duncan Edwards Request
A rude mule learns that he has more fun when he uses good manners. 

I Say Ooh You Say Aah by John Kane Request
This is no ordinary book. Everything I say you must do. So when I say ooh, you say aah. A laugh-out-loud interactive picture book (contains underpants)! 

Mule School by Julia Rawlinson Request
Although he likes some things about school, Stomper does not do well with his lessons in stubbornness and is teased for not being like the other mules, but when disaster strikes and the others dig in, Stomper proves that being stubborn is not always the best choice. 

Where Is Simon, Sandy?: The Story of a Little Donkey That Wouldn’t Quit (Based on a True Story) by Donna Marie Seim Request
This tale about a donkey and his friends illustrates what traditional life was like in the Turks and Caicos Islands. Following the story is a section for parents and teachers with background about the story and locale. There is also a list of interesting of facts about donkeys. 

The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith Request
Illustrations and lyrical text describe a bird’s adventure walking down the road and meeting an odd donkey with three legs and one eye. 

Cowie by Elizabeth Rose Stanton Request
A donkey wants to be a cow but needs his animal friends to help him learn how to moo first. 

Sylvester and the Magic Pebble by William Steig Request | Spanish
In a moment of fright, Sylvester the donkey asks his magic pebble to turn him into a rock but then can not hold the pebble to wish himself back to normal again. 

Do Donkeys Dance? by Melanie Walsh Request
Asks such questions as “Do hippos hop?” and “Can ladybugs stand on one leg?” and then tells which animal makes each specific movement. 

Donkey Trouble by Ed Young Request
In this retelling of the traditional fable, a kind but simple man and his grandson, on their way to market with their donkey, find it impossible to please everyone they meet. 

Early Readers

Pedro’s Burro by Alyssa Satin Capucilli Request
Pedro and his papa go to the market to look for the perfect burro. 

Pinwheel Days by Ellen Tarlow Request
In four separate stories, Pinwheel the donkey learns about friendship when his loneliness ends after meeting his “echo,” a lovely picnic stems from a mistake, his rubbing on a tree seems to break it, and his best dream ever comes true. 

Petting Zoo Request
Introducing words such as donkey, pony, pig, chick, lamb, frog, rabbit, and guinea pig, this book describes the activities of children who visit a petting zoo. 

Junior Fiction

Captain by Sam Angus Request
It’s 1915 and British troops are about the sail to Gallipoli. Billy is the youngest soldier in his platoon and is teased for not being old enough to drink or shave. The truth is, at fifteen he’s not old enough to be a solider, either, and he’s terrified of the war he’s about to fight. Then he meets Captain, a refugee boy, and his donkey, Hey-ho. Together, they teach Billy what it means to be brave, loyal, and fearless, and above all what it means to be a friend. 

The Grand Canyon Burros That Broke by Steve Brezenoff Request
Edward “Egg” Garrison and his friends in the Art Club are on a trip to the Grand Canyon when three riding burros mysteriously disappear. 

Saving Winslow by Sharon Creech Request
When his father brings home an ailing, newborn donkey, Louie names the animal Winslow and takes care of him, but everyone, including Louie’s quirky friend Nora, thinks Winslow is not going to survive. 

Mikis and the Donkey by Bibi Dumon Tak Request
Mikis is thrilled when his grandfather buys a new donkey, but soon begins to worry that he is overworking the animal. 

Brighty of the Grand Canyon by Marguerite Henry Request
Long ago a lone little burro roamed the high cliffs of the Grand Canyon and touched the hearts of all who knew him: even President Teddy Roosevelt. Named Brighty by the prospector who befriended him, he remained a free spirit. But when a ruthless claim-jumper murdered the prospector, Brighty risked everything to bring the killer to justice. 

Brown Sunshine of Stardust Valley by Marguerite Henry Request
Molly wants a horse of her own, but when her father’s mare gives birth to a mule, Molly changes her mind and raises the newborn. 

Jo-Jo the Melon Donkey by Michael Morpurgo Request
A mistreated donkey in Renaissance Venice gains self-respect after meeting the Doge’s kind daughter and becoming a hero during a devastating flood. 

Junior Non-Fiction

Donkeys by Darice Bailer Request
Provides comprehensive information on the anatomy, special skills, habitats, and diet of donkeys.

Mule Train Mail by Craig Brown Request
Introduces readers to Anthony Paya, wearing a cowboy hat, chaps, and spurs, who leads a train of ten mules on a daily 3-hour trek down into the Grand Canyon to bring mail to the townspeople of Supai. 

The Donkey and the Rock by Demi Request
In this version of a tale with many Asian variations, a wise king, who rules a town full of foolish people in the mountains of Tibet, puts a donkey and a rock on trial to settle the dispute between two honest men. 

The Donkey of Gallipoli: A True Story of Courage in World War I by Mark Greenwood Request
Jack and Billy grew up in South Shields, England, where a river carried great ships out to sea. During summer vacation, they led donkeys along the beach for a penny a ride. As they paced the sands of their small town, Jack dreamed that one day he would sail away on a great adventure. Jack’s wish came true. During World War I, he served as a stretcher bearer on the battlefields of Gallipoli, Turkey. When stretchers ran short, Jack enlisted the help of a donkey named Duffy, and together these unlikely heroes worked tirelessly, carrying wounded soldiers from the battlefront to the beach hospital. This is the true story of a man and his donkey, and the twist of fate that brought two boyhood friends together one last time. 

How Many Donkeys?: An Arabic Counting Tale retold from a Saudi folktale by Margaret Read MacDonald and Nadia Jameel Taibah Request
When Jouha counts the ten donkeys carrying his dates to market, he repeatedly forgets to count the one he is riding on, causing him great consternation. Includes numbers written out in Arabic and in English transliteration, as well as the numerals one through ten, and a note on the origins and other versions of the story. 

A Donkey Reads: Adapted from a Turkish Folktale by Muriel Mandell Request
In a small village in Anatolia, even the poorest villager is expected to pay tribute to a tyrannical Mogul ruler, but the wiseman, Nasreddin Hoca, finds a way to make an aged donkey seem most valuable. 

The Guardian Team: On the Job with Rena and Roo by Cat Urbigkit Request
Introduces Rena and Roo, a dog and a burro in charge of guarding the sheep on a Wyoming ranch. 

Biblioburro: A True Story from Colombia by Jeannette Winter Request
After amassing piles of books, Luis, a voracious reader, dreams up a way to share his collection with “faraway villages.” He starts with two burros – one for himself, one for books – and heads off. Tough terrain and menacing bandits challenge him along the way, but at last he reaches a remote town, where he holds a story hour and loans titles to eager kids before returning home to his wife and reading late into the night. 

Adult Non-Fiction

The Dogs of Bedlam Farm: An Adventure with Sixteen Sheep, Three Dogs, Two Donkeys, and Me by Jon Katz Request
The Dogs of Bedlam Farm recounts a harrowing winter Katz spent on a remote, windswept hillside in upstate New York with a few life-saving friends, ugly ghosts from the past, and more livestock than any novice should attempt to manage. 

Running with Sherman: The Donkey with the Heart of a Hero by Christopher McDougall Request
When Chris McDougall agreed to take in a donkey from an animal hoarder, he thought it would be no harder than the rest of the adjustments he and his family had made after moving from Philadelphia to the heart of Pennsylvania Amish country. But when he arrived, Sherman was in such bad shape he could barely move and his hair was coming out in clumps. Chris decided to undertake a radical rehabilitation program designed not only to heal Sherman’s body, but to heal his mind as well. It turns out, the best way to soothe a donkey is to give it a job and so Chris decided to teach Sherman how to run. He’d heard about burro racing – a unique type of race out west where humans and donkeys run together in a call-back to mining days – and decided he and Sherman would enter the World Championship in Colorado. Easier said than done. In the course of Sherman’s training, Chris would have to recruit several other runners, both human and equine, and call upon the wisdom of burro racers, goat farmers, Amish running club members, and a group of irrepressible female long-haul truckers. Along the way, he shows us the life-changing power of animals, nature, and community. 

Last of the Donkey Pilgrims by Kevin O’Hara Request
Kevin O’Hara’s journey to self-discovery begins as a mad lark: who in their right mind would try to circle the entire coastline of Ireland on foot – and with a donkey and cart no less? But Kevin had promised his homesick Irish mother that he would explore the whole of the Old Country and bring back the sights and stories to their home in Massachusetts. Determined to reach his grandmother’s village by Christmas Eve, Kevin and his stubborn but endearing donkey, Missie, set off on an 1800-mile trek along the entire jagged coast of a divided Ireland. 


Be sure to browse the library catalog online here, and use your library card number and PIN (last four digits of your phone number) to place a hold request.

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