Pig Is Big

Overview

What is big?

Join Douglas Florian and a decidedly big pink pig as they travel around town, across a continent, and through the universe, taking a look at things that are big bigger biggest!

Bulletin Blue Ribbon Best of 2000 Award

Rhyming text explains that cows are bigger than pigs, cars are bigger still, and the universe is the biggest of all.

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Overview

What is big?

Join Douglas Florian and a decidedly big pink pig as they travel around town, across a continent, and through the universe, taking a look at things that are big bigger biggest!

Bulletin Blue Ribbon Best of 2000 Award

Rhyming text explains that cows are bigger than pigs, cars are bigger still, and the universe is the biggest of all.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
"What's big? A pig is big. A pig is fat. A pig is bigger than my hat. What's bigger than a pig?". So begins this tale of an inquisitive pig. Determined to put things in the right perspective, he travels the world to find out what is the biggest thing in the world. Sporting a playful orange cap, he begins his journey eager to discover what is bigger than him. He finds that a cow is bigger than him and a car is bigger than a cow. The story follows as such and ends with the biggest thing of all -- the universe.

Author-illustrator Douglas Florian uses watercolor and colored pencils to illustrate the pleasant pig and his travels.The details of his voyage will amuse readers, especially his flight over the city in a hot air balloon and the view of the earth that includes surfers in the ocean. Particularly appealing is the use of the sky, painted in a deep, swirly blue, that depicts the grandeur of the world and the night. This book teaches the basic concept of size with realism mixed with awe. The final page includes a picture of the sun, earth, and moon and reads, "The universe is wide in girth. It is the biggest thing of all. Compared to it all things seem small." This short sentence encompasses a truth that children and adults will find to be exciting and yet comforting at the same time.

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In the first of Florian's (Mammalabilia) delicately painted, thoughtfully conceived watercolors, just a tip of an ear and the top of a hat hint at the answer to the question, "What's big?" At the turn of the page, readers discover that "a pig is big./ A pig is fat./ A pig is bigger than my hat." The world widens with each additional line, from the smiling, peachy pig to a city street and eventually to the wide blue universe. Florian's illustrations grow increasingly complex without overwhelming readers with detail. But while the initial jaunty verses are just right for preschoolers, both language and concepts become more sophisticated as the book progresses: "What's bigger than a city?... The earth's dimensions do excel./ In magnitude it is gigantic,/ From Katmandu to the Atlantic." Florian occasionally scrambles the sense of his verses for the sake of the rhyme ("A cow is bigger than a boar or sow./ It's bigger yesterday and now"). In general, though, the presentation is clever and humorous, well suited for elementary school children prepared to grasp the size of a universe as "the biggest thing of all./ Compared to it all things seem small." Ages 3-up. (Oct.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
PreS-K-Three-line rhymes explore the concept of big, bigger, and biggest. A consistent formula is followed: "What's big?/A pig is big./A pig is fat./A pig is bigger than my hat./What's bigger than a pig?," etc. Successively larger animals or objects are introduced until at last the universe is reached. The rhymes themselves are not particularly fresh or original and not up to Florian's usual standards. While the book's design, with its brief sentences, bold font, and simple concepts, would seem to appeal to preschoolers, some of the vocabulary, such as "dimensions," "excel," and "girth," would likely be beyond them. The consistent presence of gray or yellow skies in the competent watercolor-and-colored-pencil illustrations gives them a rather dreary air. Eric Carle's Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me (Picture Book Studio, 1991) is a better choice for creative exploration of the concept of relative size.-Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
From The Critics
In A Pig Is Big takes young readers ages 3 and up on a delightful travel around town, across the continent, and through the universe in the company of a very big pig. Featuring a rhyming text and Doug Florian's signature illustrations, this exploration of big, bigger, and biggest will entertain young readers as they discover that no matter how big things may seem, compared to the universe everything is small -- just like they are. A Pig Is Big is highly recommended for preschool and kindergarten story hour, as well as a parent-child reading activity.
Kirkus Reviews
"What's big?" asks a pleasant pink pig as he compares himself to cows, cars, trucks, streets, the neighborhood, the city, and the earth, and finally to the universe, which "makes everything seem small." Although the concept of relative size is well taken, the expansion from self to universe is flawed by the incongruity of some of the images. The pig and the cow squeeze into a model T—type car that is stuck in the mud, but are towed by a modern tow truck into a modern city. In the final sequence, the sun seems smaller than the earth. A simple verse pattern carries the lilting text with each verse ending with the repetitive phrase "What's bigger than . . ." Florian's double-paged watercolor paints and colored pencil are soft and muted, sometimes too muted, particularly in background areas. Occasional flashes of humor illustrate the text as the cow and the pig travel through a city populated by animals at work and at play. It ends with an amusing image of the pig as a constellation in the universe. Not Florian's best effort, but a good conversation-starter with a young child about comparative size. (Picture book. 3-5)Freedman, Russell GIVE ME LIBERTY!: The Story of the Declaration of Independence Holiday House (112 pp.) Oct. 2000
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688171254
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/28/2000
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 24
  • Sales rank: 387,571
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Douglas Florian's books for children include A Pig Is Big, as well as the poetry collections Beast Feast; Lizards, Frogs, and Polliwogs; In the Swim; and Mammalabilia. Mr. Florian lives with his family in New York City.

Douglas Florian's books for children include A Pig Is Big, as well as the poetry collections Beast Feast; Lizards, Frogs, and Polliwogs; In the Swim; and Mammalabilia. Mr. Florian lives with his family in New York City.

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