From the Publisher
"More fun than a rasher of bacon and sure to be in demand at story hours." Kirkus Reviews with Pointers
"The exuberant illustrations are colorful and action-filled. Greedy witch and wolf both get what they deserve in this thoroughly enjoyable romp that turns a popular nursery song on end." School Library Journal, Starred
"A sardonically humorous, rip-roaring yarn that can be enjoyed all year round." Booklist, ALA, Starred Review
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Pigs in disguise fool a witch who wants to eat them for lunch. Ages 4-8. (Aug.)
Children's Literature - Susie Wilde
The greatest read aloud that I've discovered this year is this story of Gritch, a greedy and not-so-bright witch, who's got an itch for Piggy Pie. Her problem is that she needs eight plump piggies. Walking her long green-nailed fingernails down the Yellow Pages, Gritch discovers Old MacDonald's Farm (Call Ei-ei-o). There the fun begins as pigs don disguises and, despite the taunts of the frustrated witch, refuse to show their true pink colors. Palatini threads themes of the familiar song that make for fun chorusing and Gritch's fantastic name calling is sure to prod giggles. Fine joins in the fun with playful illustrative details like the sky writing "Surrender Piggies."
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-A very contemporary-sounding Gritch the Witch sets out for Old MacDonald's Farm to get herself a meal of plump piggies. Alerted, however, by her skywritten ``Surrender Piggies!,'' the swine hastily don sheep, cow, and other barnyard disguises and fool her with their good acting (moos, quacks, etc.) and poker-faced denials of any pigs in residence. The still-hungry Gritch is persuaded to give up by a Big Bad Wolf (he's been unsuccessfully chasing three pigs for days), and the two go off for lunch, each picturing the other made into a sandwich. Children may not catch all the humorous references, like the yellow-pages ad for Yazgur's farm (site of the real Woodstock), but will quickly catch on to refrains in the text echoing ``Old MacDonald.'' The exuberant illustrations are colorful and action-filled. Greedy (but not too bright) witch and wolf both get what they deserve in this thoroughly enjoyable romp that turns a popular nursery song on end.-Meg Stackpole, Rye Free Reading Room, NY
This is definitely not your run-of-the-mill Halloween picture book, even though Gritch the Witch certainly looks her part (though a bit more trendy), with a pointy hat, a gap-toothed grin, vicious green fingernails, and two beauteous moles on her face. She acts her part, too, swaggering, greedy, and just plain impatient, as she brooms off to Old MacDonald's Farm in search of eight plump porkers for her favorite pie. But Palatini deftly turns the tables on Gritch, whose own sense of importance (and the skywritten warning "Surrender Piggies!" ) gives her victims time to implement a plan to save their bacon. When hungry Gritch arrives at the farm, she can't find a single pig. Instead, she finds a wolf, whom she slyly invites home: "I always enjoy having a wolf for lunch." The wry, peppery dialogue is simply great ("Look, Shorty, I've been quack-quacked here, moo-mooed there, and clucked-clucked everywhere all over this farm" ), and Palatini's allusions to popular children's stories from "The Wizard of Oz" to the "Three Little Pigs" will delight kids. So will Fine's bold, expressive artwork, which gives wicked Gritch a comic audacity that makes her trouncing all the better. A sardonically humorous, rip-roaring yarn that can be enjoyed all year round.