Tuesday, January 20, 2009

review: Tales of Oliver Pig by Jean Van Leeuwen

genre: children's literature
rating: 5/5

Oliver Pig is a staple from my childhood. I remember him being read to me and I remember reading it myself. This past week I read my own battered copy to my three and a half year old son - his first "chapter book" experience, and what a great experience it was.

Oliver Pig is a typical sort of child. He has a pesky younger sister Amanda who drives him nuts. He loves being dirty and playing outside and still really needs his mom. The stories in this book are short but full of incredibly familiar scenarios for any child. In one story, Oliver bakes cookies with his Mom (my son particularly liked this one). In another, Grandma comes to visit and everyone helps get ready for her arrival.

For pigs, all the characters in this book are beautifully human - in my favorite story, Mom Pig spends much time getting all her sweethearts ready to go out the door for some snow play and by the time she gets her own gear on, her pig children have taken all their things off again. Her response is so genuine and I love how her children interact with her, it's very tender.

This is a longish review for a very short read, but I wanted to record my son's first chapter book listen. I also wanted to help myself remember him wrapped in his comforter, blond wispy hair in my face, snuggled on my lap, listening and asking questions about my old and dear friend, Oliver Pig.

1 comment:

erin sheely said...

Oh how I love Oliver Pig. I need to pick this up to read to my kiddos.

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