Beginning Pearls

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Overview

 Now younger readers can enjoy the wit and outlandish puns in the world of Pearls Before Swine!

Meet the always hilarious cast of Pearls Before Swine. Heading the cast is Rat, a mean-spirited rodent who lives with the trusting and simple-minded Pig. Their supporting cast includes the highly intellectual Goat; the meek and defenseless Zebra; and the hungry and incompetent Crocs. With cartoons specially chosen for young readers, Beginning Pearls retains the strip's signature ...

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Overview

 Now younger readers can enjoy the wit and outlandish puns in the world of Pearls Before Swine!

Meet the always hilarious cast of Pearls Before Swine. Heading the cast is Rat, a mean-spirited rodent who lives with the trusting and simple-minded Pig. Their supporting cast includes the highly intellectual Goat; the meek and defenseless Zebra; and the hungry and incompetent Crocs. With cartoons specially chosen for young readers, Beginning Pearls retains the strip's signature dark humor and outlandish puns!

 

           

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Hazel Buys
"Beginning" refers to comic strips written early in Pastis' career and selected for their appeal to younger age groups. Pastis' book is organized by character, each of whom is presented with several first-person introductory pages, followed by panels in which that character figures prominently. The cast includes Rat, Pig, Goat, Zebra, and Crocs, all familiar from the daily strips. Color has been added to the outlined drawings. The selection process compromises the contextual flow of the series, giving a number of the panels a disconnected feel with no way of understanding some of the references and jokes. Pastis' drawing is rudimentary with dots for eyes and stick arms and legs. This visual style matches the broad style of the humor and emphasizes the written content, which is the essence of the Pearls Before Swine comic strip. The characters' deadpan delivery sharpens the punch lines and increases the humor. The minimalist drawing style, bare environmental surroundings, and slim cast of characters generates a fast-paced visual reading experience that will appeal to young readers. The rectangular format of the book, however, is not always compatible with the horizontal nature of comic strips and makes the sequence of some panels awkward. Pearls Before Swine is considered a family comic strip and this book would also be best experienced in a family-style setting, with older children or adults on hand to comment on some of the darker moments or explain the more obscure puns. As a resource in an upper elementary or lower middle school library or classroom, Pastis' book could be used to advantage in a group setting with an adult leader who would be available to expand on the "Pearls of wisdom" and help clarify the text. Reviewer: Hazel Buys
School Library Journal
09/01/2013
Gr 3–6—While Pastis's somewhat controversial Pearls Before Swine has been in syndication since 2000, this is the first time a collection has been curated specifically for a younger audience. Beginning Pearls organizes the strips by character, with each section featuring Rat, Pig, Goat, Zebra, and the Crocs, respectively. The art is fairly simple-the figures have stick arms and legs, and the action is minimal, often taking place behind a table, desk, or brick wall. Background details are spare, if they exist at all. Because of the nature of comic strips, this minimalism doesn't detract from the overall effect and may even enhance it. Color has been added to the daily strips, a nice bonus for those who may have seen the material before. As for the content, Pastis cites a number of influences on his strip-including Peanuts, Calvin and Hobbes, Dilbert, and the Far Side-and Pearls's humor effectively channels them while still being unique. Fans of the aforementioned titles won't be disappointed. The only drawback is that the nine-by-six inch book size is not ideal for comic strips. The last (usually third) panel of the strip is placed below the first two on the page and enlarged to reduce the white space around it. It's not only visually awkward, but it also has an unintended consequence of overemphasizing the punch line, which is, more often than not, funny because of its understatement. Sunday strips, marked by a solid color background over two pages, fare much better.—J. M. Poole, Webster Public Library, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781449423032
  • Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
  • Publication date: 7/9/2013
  • Series: amp! Comics for Kids Series
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 472,829
  • Age range: 7 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Stephan Pastis

Stephan Pastis is an attorney turned cartoonist. A graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, and the UCLA School of Law, he worked as a lawyer before trying his hand at cartooning. Pastis lives in the Bay Area, with his wife and two children.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2013

    Awsome

    This book is a must read but if you are under the age of 11 ask a parent or gardain this book has cusing,vilance, and crude humor but it is a really good book

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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