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Children's Nonfiction General

Howdy, I'm Flores LaDue

by (author) Ayesha Clough

illustrated by Hugh Rookwood & Keegan Starlight

Red Barn Books
Initial publish date
Mar 2022
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2022
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 7 to 10
  • Grade: 2 to 5


Life is tough, but so are cowgirls. This is the true story of Flores LaDue (1883-1951), ideal for ages 7-9. A world champion trick roper and First Lady of the Calgary Stampede, Flores helped put Western Canada on the world map. A rider, roper and rodeo queen, her story will inspire kids to work hard, blaze their own trails, and rope the life of their dreams.

Part of the award-winning Howdy Books series. Features a special collaboration with First Nations artist Keegan Starlight on pages with Indigenous art. This 44-page full-colour illustrated biography also includes a timeline, archive photos, author notes and cookie recipe.

It fits perfectly with the Grade Four curriculum but is suitable for Grades Two to Five. An excellent choice for International Women's Day on March 8, Stampede Week, and Women's History Month in October.

To book a Virtual or In-Person school visit, please email BIPOC author and illustrators.

About the authors

Contributor Notes

Ayesha Clough (pronounced eye-sha cluff) is a former news reporter and editor who has worked for CBC and BBC News. She started Red Barn Books because she couldn’t find many stories for her cowboy-crazy son. She lives on a little farm north of Calgary with her two- and four-legged posse.


Hugh Rookwood is a comic book illustrator who loves to draw superheroes. His own superpower is giving his characters depth and dynamic energy. Hugh did his Art Diploma at Sheridan College in Toronto. He lives in Airdrie, Alberta, with his wife, two boys, and Cintiq drawing tablet.


Keegan Starlight is a multimedia artist from the Tsuut’ina Nation, just west of Calgary. Keegan’s murals are on display all over Calgary and his art is showcased across Canada. Keegan studied at the Alberta University of the Arts. He lives in Tsuut’ina, Alberta, with his wife and three children.

Excerpt: Howdy, I'm Flores LaDue (by (author) Ayesha Clough; illustrated by Hugh Rookwood & Keegan Starlight)

I invited all my cowgirl friends to come and compete in the Calgary Stampede.


Hazel Walker rode a bronc named Buttons.

Bertha Blancett rocked the Relay.

Tillie Baldwin beat the boys in Roman Riding.


“Let ’er buck!”

“Ride, baby, ride!”

“Eat my dust, fellas.”


Lucille Mulhall roped steers AND she was named ‘Lady Bucking Horse Rider of the World’.

It was a close contest with Lucille, but I clinched the fancy roping title.


“Watch ‘em jump!!”



We broke ankles. We sprained wrists.

We crashed. And we smashed.

We won! And we lost.

But we always rode on.

We were horse women, cowgirl superstars, Rodeo Queens.


“E-E-E-E-E Yippy Yow!”

Editorial Reviews

“Ayesha has once again brought to life a notable pioneer from Alberta’s ranching heritage. The book teaches life lessons that apply as much today as they did over a hundred years ago.” — Scott Grattidge, Executive Director, Stockmen’s Memorial Foundation

“Beautifully illustrated and historically factual, Howdy I’m Flores LaDue will no doubt become a collector’s book of choice.” — Alison Keene, President, La Due Ladies Lunch Foundation

"Young readers and history lovers of all ages will delight in Howdy, I’m Flores LaDue. Clough’s magnificent writing, attention to historical detail, and the beautiful artwork combine to inspire readers with the enticing story of LaDue, the cowgirl and community builder who helped found the Calgary Stampede." — Christine Leppard, PhD, Historical Specialist, Calgary Stampede

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Other titles by Hugh Rookwood

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