One Little Chicken by Elka Weber
Illustrated by Elisa Kleven
Published by Tricycle Press
Leora found a chicken in her yard. She didn't know where it had come from but she was excited at the prospect of being able to have fresh eggs for breakfast everyday. But the chicken was not hers, and her mother, Mrs.Bendosa, reminded her: "You know the rule. Finders aren't keepers." The family is determined to return the chicken as soon as they find its rightful owner, and meanwhile they will take very good care of it. Soon the chicken has become a flock of chickens and they trade them for a goat. The goat makes enough cheese that they are able to buy a second goat. The pair of goats become a family and soon there are goats everywhere around the Bendosa's yard. When the owner of the chicken finally appears, the Bendosa's give him the whole herd of goats.
One Little Chicken will challenge kids to question "finders, keepers". There is something more rewarding about "finders aren't keepers", especially when it follows the example of One Little Chicken. The Author's Note at the end of the book explains the origins of this Jewish rule. The illustrations by Kleven are folksy, vibrant, and full of textures are details. Delightful read.