cover image Hanna's Hog

Hanna's Hog

Jim Aylesworth. Atheneum Books, $13.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-689-31367-7

Hanna is a backwoodswoman, pleased with her chickens and her hog; none of them ever give her any trouble. Every now and then, a chicken disappears, but, while Hanna suspects her neighbor Kenny has stolen it, she can never prove anything. Then one day her hog is missing, and Hanna confronts Kenny. He says a bear took it, but Hanna is on to him. She waits until dark and plays a trick on Kenny to make him believe that a bear really has been around; after scaring him silly, Hanna and her hog head home. Aylesworth's story is really a joke that goes on a bit too longafter all, why does Hanna put up with chicken theft and not hog-stealin'? But Rounds's pictures give the story its punch; his crotchety black lines are scratched around surprising colorslike the mustard yellow of the hog and the olive green of an old slop bucket. Ages 5-8. (March)