Just in time for the Olympics, a spirited, sporty romp about losing gracefully

Boomer the Pig has been training hard for the Animal Olympics, so when he loses his first race, he shrugs it off and cheerfully moves on. One event after another, Boomer keeps losing, and the frustration begins to get to him. But even after coming in last in every sport, there's no getting this Olympig down. It's just great practice for the Winter Games!

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Just in time for the Olympics, a spirited, sporty romp about losing gracefully

Boomer the Pig has been training hard for the Animal Olympics, so when he loses his first race, he shrugs it off and cheerfully moves on. One event after another, Boomer keeps losing, and the frustration begins to get to him. But even after coming in last in every sport, there's no getting this Olympig down. It's just great practice for the Winter Games!

Cool comic book styling combines with classic picture book heart in this encouraging and hilarious story for every kid who's ever been told "you can't win 'em all."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This underdog story—underpig, actually—suggests that while practice doesn’t always make perfect, it does make good entertainment. Enthusiastic aspiring Olympian Boomer believes, “If you practice and try your best, you can do anything!” Unfortunately, Boomer’s attempt to win one different sporting event after another at the Animal Olympics fails; he is generally able to keep his chins up, but when his cannonball dive bombs, Boomer loses it in a rage-filled tantrum that occupies a full spread. A JumboTron vote of confidence from his mother gives Boomer newfound confidence, however, and in a red, sparkly homemade gymnastics outfit, Boomer is on fire in the final event. No, really. Jamieson (Bea Rocks the Flock) satirizes sports coverage by way of a mean-spirited, cliché-spouting announcer named Mr. Hamstring, who is intent on tearing Boomer down. The acrylic artwork is consistently lively and expressive, playing well with the often-deadpan text (“Boomer took the loss pretty well,” writes Jamieson as the pig is seen wildly sobbing in his track uniform). A humorous romp just in time for the London Olympics. Ages 5–8. Agent: Paul Rodeen, Rodeen Literary Management. (July)
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Boomer, an ambitious pig, assures Mr. Hamstring, a reporter, that, "If you practice and try your best, you can do anything!" So he practices all day and dreams all night of Olympic triumph. At the Animal Olympics the confident Boomer cries when he is left behind in the first race, but assures Hamstring that he will do better. But sadly, in a series of events, he does not. However he knows that he has "the very best dive in the animal kingdom." Into the pool he cannonballs; but the judges do not appreciate his dive at all. Angrily Boomer shouts, "I QUIT!" Hamstring, meanwhile has put Boomer's mother on TV. To his surprise, she says she still loves him and is proud of him. So he returns for the final gymnastics, and an upbeat ending. From his portrait on the jacket as a corpulent porker, Boomer's failures are predictable. Jamieson's acrylic illustrations create a cast of characters that express themselves clearly; there is a quality of comic melodrama to the sequence of Boomer's trials. Asides in amusing speech balloons add to the fun. The story unfolds in vignettes and double-page spreads, with our hero occupying center stage. On the end pages are monochromatic images of Boomer in action. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3—"If you practice and try your best," says Boomer, "you can do anything!" This cheerfully unrealistic belief carries the piglet through a series of painful and amusing disasters at the summer Animal Olympics. His fellow sprinters include a greyhound and a cheetah; one of the weight lifters is an elephant; and he's easily beaten at pole vaulting by a flying squirrel. But each time Brent Hamstring, discouraging sports reporter, confronts Boomer with the impossibility of his winning any event, the pig bounces back to try again. (Okay, a couple of temper tantrums intervene.) One suspects that his can-do attitude has a lot to do with his mama, who says on camera, "My son may not be perfect, but he is still my special little boy. Boomer…I love you and I am so proud of you!" Jamieson snatches moral victory from the jaws of athletic defeat with warmth, satirical wit, and old-fashioned silliness. Her drawings and formats are wonderfully varied, colorful, and bursting with personality. Subtle, funny commentaries will be appreciated by slightly older readers, stretching Olympig's appeal.—Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY
Kirkus Reviews
The story of a pig, perhaps a tad delusional but all guns and going for Olympic gold. Jamieson's young porker, Boomer, is the first pig to compete in the history of the Animal Olympics. He's a charger--"Hard work and practice make an Olympic champion"--but still a pig: not as strong as the elephant, as speedy as the cheetah or as brawny as the gorilla. A mean-spirited reporter tries to diminish his hopes, yet Boomer can only see gold dancing before his eyes. And they are wonderful eyes, enormously expressive in his great pig head as he proceeds to get trounced in every event. The reporter needles Boomer after every loss, and Boomer finally snaps when his cannonball fails to impress the diving judges: "Who made you the boss? No fair! Lawsuit, buddy!" He quits. But his mother tells him how proud she is, and he returns for a slam-bang finale. Hope springs eternal; it's not winning, but how you play the game; you can't win them all. True, but Boomer makes such a hash of each contest, perhaps it is best just to say that he is a good sport, and good sports make sports good. Though the story doesn't turn any new ground, Jamieson's affective artwork, with its brio and dash, endows Boomer with an attractive personality, no matter his flaws. A salubrious object lesson of playing for playing's sake. (Picture book. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803735361
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
  • Publication date: 7/5/2012
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,460,146
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD510L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.60 (w) x 10.70 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Victoria Jamieson lives in Portland, Oregon.

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