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Tuesday, August 4, 2015

What This Story Needs is a Pig in a Wig, written and illustrated by Emma J. Virjan. Harper.2015. $12.50 ages 4 and up

"This story also needs
a rat.

A rat with a hat,
on a trunk,

with a skunk,
in a house,

with a mouse ... "

I have mentioned this before: if we want early learners to love reading, we need to give them books that are worthy of their attention. In this story, Emma Virjan introduces us to a pig, a frog, a dog, a goat, a rat, an elephant, a skunk, and finally a panda. It all begins in a boat and the action only lasts as long as the boat can sustain its beastly cargo.

That pig in a red wig is joined by the frog, dog and goat. Her boat is not that big and she makes it evident through facial expression that she is not thrilled with the situation. More animals join them As the stability of their transport becomes more precarious with each new addition, she has finally had enough:

It's getting crowded
in here,
don't you think?
Off of this boat
before we all sink!"

The other critters respond by bailing out as per her request, leaving the pig in the wig  on the boat in the moat feeling lonely:

I made a mistake
when I sent you away.
Can you swim back
so we can all play?"

Lesson learned, and reading made most enjoyable!

Cartoon-like, boldly colored images are sure to add to the appeal of this for early readers. Be prepared to hear it read repeatedly!

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