Wishes, Kisses, and Pigs

Wishes, Kisses, and Pigs

3.5 4
by Betsy Gould Hearne, Trina Schart Hyman, Leslie A. Baker
     
 

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Is it possible to turn your brother into a pig? Louise is beginning to wonder. Ever since the night she made that wish, Willie has been missing. And there's the strange new pig that appeared, a big white one with sky blue eyes — just like Willie's. Mama doesn't know what to do and Daddy's gone, so Louise has a tough question to answer on her own. How do you…  See more details below

Overview


Is it possible to turn your brother into a pig? Louise is beginning to wonder. Ever since the night she made that wish, Willie has been missing. And there's the strange new pig that appeared, a big white one with sky blue eyes — just like Willie's. Mama doesn't know what to do and Daddy's gone, so Louise has a tough question to answer on her own. How do you undo a wish once you realize how dangerous wishes can be?

Fast-paced, funny, and fluently written, this tale sweeps from a bright beginning to a brilliant ending. Along the way readers can work on a question of their own: What in the world could wishes, kisses, and pigs have in common?

Editorial Reviews

"Nature's magical and magic's natural," says a character in this refreshing novel that seamlessly blends magic and everyday life. One evening eleven-year-old Louise, who lives on a mountainside farm, complains that her brother, Willie, is a pig. The first star, which has just appeared, apparently takes her comment as a wish, for Willie disappears&3151;and the next day a white, blue-eyed pig appears. Louise and her mother, both likable characters, scheme to restore Willie to human shape.
—Kathleen Odean

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
"Be careful what you wish for" is the lesson that resounds (a bit too loudly) throughout this offbeat fairy tale set in Tollivers' Hollow, "said to be a peculiar place, even a perilous place." Farm girl Louise calls her brother a pig at the exact moment she wishes upon a star. The next thing she knows, brother Willie is gone; soon after, a big white pig with "sky blue" eyes like Willie's mysteriously appears. Holding herself responsible for the unfortunate transformation, Louise determines to set things right. But how? Offering a supporting cast of comical characters, a dash of philosophy and generous dose of surprises, the energetic story calls to mind Sid Hite's farm-family fantasies. But while it shares Hite's spirited folksiness and quirkiness, it lacks Hite's internal logic and consistent tone; Hearne's (Listening for Leroy) occasional attempts at seriousness are too pointed and her characters' inspirations somewhat arbitrary. Some motifs don't cohere for example, there are hints that the Tollivers are descendants of Jack of Beanstalk fame, but not enough to make the connection meaningful. Those expecting an all's-well end to a playful romp instead receive a confusing message about desire, fate and nature, plus a parting image of a child making funeral plans for a beloved animal. Like Louise and her wish, this story is a strange mix of potent language and disjointed events. Ages 8-12. (Apr.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
When Louise wishes that her brother were a pig, he disappears and a pig with sky-blue eyes shows up. In her first attempt to get Willie back, Louise wishes on a star for the dirty pig in the barn to become human. Presto! The old sow becomes an old woman and Willie remains a pig. Now what can she do? What if she only has three wishes and she has already used up two? There are other strange happenings on the Toliver farm. Their father disappeared seven years ago, but there is a friendly owl that always hangs out nearby. The pig-turned-human eats slops out of a bucket and is befuddled by clothes and furniture. The bumbling sheriff is more interested in courting Mrs. Toliver than finding her missing son. And, poor Willie tries to talk, but it sounds more like a grunt. In the end, Louise gathers all of the characters (humans as well as animals) together on a clear night of a new moon. As the first star appears, Louise makes her wish and all are changed back to their original forms. The book is full of humor and love. 2001, Margaret K. McElderry Books, 16.00. Ages 9 to 12. Reviewer: Janet L. Rose
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-Louise Tolliver loves Tolliver's Hollow, the "peculiar" place where she lives with her mother and brother. She just wishes that her father hadn't disappeared seven years ago, and that her brother didn't tease her so much. Still, when she calls Willie a pig as the evening star appears, she never meant for him to become one. Then certain folks become a little too interested in the new pig, whom they think would be perfect to serve at the town's picnic, and the sheriff and his brother both want to court her mother. When Louise's first attempt at rectifying the wish gone awry only causes more problems, she has to think very carefully about how to put things right. Hearne has written a delightful novel about the dangers of getting what you wish for. Louise is an engaging girl who is determined to bring order to her disorderly world. This is not an easy thing to do, but she accomplishes it through ingenuity, perfect timing, and a heap of luck. The colloquialisms used to describe farm life accentuate the rural charm of the plot. Children will enjoy this enchanting story as much as the parents with whom they will want to share it.-Betsy Fraser, Calgary Public Library, Canada Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Child Magazine
A Child Magazine Best Book of 2001 Pick

Did Louise really turn her brother into a pig when she wished on a star? There's magic afoot in this engaging tale, as Louise scrambles to deal with her folly and reunite her family. Bewitched readers will find themselves guessing to the very end.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780689841224
Publisher:
Margaret K. McElderry Books
Publication date:
04/28/2001
Edition description:
1 ED
Pages:
144
Product dimensions:
5.74(w) x 8.57(h) x 0.68(d)
Lexile:
690L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

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