Pig Surprise

Ute Krause, Author Dial Books $11.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8037-0714-6
In her illustrations for both Achim Broger's The Santa Clauses and Elfie Donnelly's A Package for Miss Marshwater , Krause made the most of the delivery scenes, and the packages that piled up. Perhaps those stories inspired her first solo effort, in which the contents of a package nearly ruin a family. Nina asks a rather deaf aunt for a guinea pig, writing out the order so there will be no misunderstanding. But she spells ``guinea'' wrong, and her well-meaning auntie sends a genuine porker. Herman is a great friend for Nina, and after misbehaving initially, learns to be a careful, tidy playmate. But when he spies a mud-pond full of pigs, his attitude changes for the worse. Herman is set free; when he returns for visits with his companions, Nina finds herself with more piggy friends than she knows what to do with. Krause handles her watercolors beautifully, instilling each scene with a solid sense of place and allowing for graceful movement from one scene to the next. Like Dale Gottlieb's Big Dog and Hans Peterson's Erik Has a Squirrel , the lesson here is a tough one, but Nina passes it--as does Krause--with flying colors. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 02/27/1989
Release date: 03/01/1989
Mass Market Paperbound - 320 pages - 978-0-14-054592-0
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