K-Gr 2-Johnson, who regaled readers with The Cow Who Wouldn't Come Down (Orchard, 1993), returns with a sequel that is equally hilarious. "Ever since Gertrude [the cow] had taken up flying, there had been no living with George [the pig]," this story begins. It seems George is determined to do all the things Gertrude does, such as taking to the skies, driving Miss Rosemary's farm truck, and playing the piano-all with disastrous results. Miss Rosemary decides something has to be done, and she and Gertrude have a long talk. Soon, Gertrude is acting like a pig-rooting in the ground, squealing "Oink, Oink," and wallowing in the mud. At first puzzled, George finally gives a giant "Weeeeeeeeeeeee" and, in a lavish double-page spread, dives into the mud. Relieved, Miss Rosemary says, "Cows are cows, and pigs are pigs...And that's a known fact." But the last page hints at something more as Magnolia the duck, who has been an interested bystander throughout the fray, stands tall, wings out, and declares "OINK, OINK." The story's silliness will delight children, who will find the animals' antics downright funny, while a subtler level of humor will appeal to a slightly older crowd. Watercolor illustrations have an appropriate down-home look, while the characters' well-executed expressions and postures bring life to this affable tale.-Barbara Elleman, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI
Poor Miss Rosemary. Inspired by the example of Gertrude, The Cow Who Wouldn't Come Down (1993), George the pig is trying to fly, play music, and drive. The results are uniformly disastrous: "It's a known fact pigs don't drive," scolds Miss Rosemary after the inevitable crash. The animals are as expressive as the people in Johnson's tidy, clean-lined country scenes; George's cheery confidence comes through as clearly as the local sheriff's irritation does. At last Miss Rosemary and Gertrude put their heads together, drawing up a successful scheme to get George to behave like a perfect pig-just as Magnolia the goose decides to burst into oinks. (Picture book. 4-7) .