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Mercy Watson to the Rescue Paperback – December 22, 2009

75 customer reviews
Book 1 of 6 in the Mercy Watson Series

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 2–Mercy Watson, a disarmingly charming pig adopted by a loving human family, makes her debut in this new series of chapter books for beginning readers. After the Watsons tuck Mercy into bed with a sweet song and a kiss, she feels warm inside, as if she has just eaten hot toast with a great deal of butter on it. However, afraid of the dark, she snuggles into bed with the couple. Moments later, all three are rudely awakened from their lovely dreams with a BOOM! as their bed falls into a hole that has opened in the floor beneath them. In hot pursuit of buttered toast, the porcine wonder inadvertently gets help and saves the day. Along the way, she causes great, humorous distress to the next-door Lincoln sisters. Van Dusen's bright gouache illustrations have a jovial exaggerated style and capture the sometimes frantic action and silliness of Mercy's heroic escapade.–Lee Bock, Glenbrook Elementary School, Pulaski, WI
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* PreS-Gr. 2. Oh, Mercy, what a pig! Mercy is a fat little porker, a beloved member of the Watson family. When Mr and Mrs. Watson sing her a happy morning song, she feels as warm inside as buttered toast. But when the lights go off, Mercy is so scared she gets in bed with the Watsons. The bed breaks under the weight, which leads to a series of hysterical events. The Watsons think Mercy is on the way to call the fire department, when, in fact, she wants to see if next-door neighbor Baby Lincoln has any buttered toast. After another misunderstanding and a merry chase, the firemen arrive--just in time to rescue the Watsons, who are about to fall through the floor. Mercy is a heroine (to the Watsons, at least), resulting in more songs and towers of toast. Appropriate as both a picture book and a beginning reader, this joyful story combines familiar elements (the unexpected heroine, the mean neighbor) with a raucous telling that lets readers in on the joke. Van Dusen's artwork is also spot-on. The gouache illustrations are polished to a sheen and have plenty of heft. The characters are exaggerated with a vintage cartoon flair; Mercy, for instance, looks like a piggy bank that has sprung to life. Another jolly adventure about Mercy is in the works. Ilene Cooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 - 9 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 4
  • Lexile Measure: 450L (What's this?)
  • Series: Mercy Watson (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 80 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick; 1 Reprint edition (December 22, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763645044
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763645045
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 0.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (75 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,472 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

The theme of hope and belief amid impossible circumstances is a common thread in much of Kate DiCamillo's writing, and no matter their nationality or age, readers around the world have come to appreciate and anticipate the messages of shared humanity and connectedness in her work.

In her instant #1 New York Times bestseller The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, a haughty china rabbit undergoes a profound transformation after finding himself facedown on the ocean floor -- lost, and waiting to be found. The Tale of Despereaux -- the Newbery Medal-winning novel that later inspired an animated adventure from Universal Pictures --stars a tiny mouse with exceptionally large ears who is driven by love to become an unlikely hero. And The Magician's Elephant, an acclaimed and exquisitely paced fable, dares to
ask the question, What if?

Kate DiCamillo's own journey is something of a dream come true. After moving to Minnesota from Florida in her twenties, homesickness and a bitter winter helped inspire Because of Winn-Dixie -- her first published novel, which, remarkably, became a runaway bestseller and snapped up a Newbery Honor. "After the Newbery committee called me, I spent the whole day walking into walls," she says. "I was stunned. And very, very happy."

The author's second novel, The Tiger Rising, went on to become a National Book Award Finalist. And since then, this master storyteller, whose books are now published in more than forty languages, has written for a wide range of ages. Her luminous holiday picture book, Great Joy, is enjoyed by children as young as preschoolers. Three early-chapter-book series demonstrate a quirky humor that appeals to emerging readers, whether the books feature "porcine wonder" Mercy Watson in her obsessive pursuit of buttered toast, or Bink and Gollie, who embody the tall and short of a marvelous friendship. More recently, spin-off characters from Mercy Watson have appeared in Tales from Deckawoo Drive, a series launched in Fall 2014 with the first title featuring the reformed thief Leroy Ninker.

Kate DiCamillo's latest novel and second Newbery Medal winner, Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures, was released in Fall 2013 to great acclaim, garnering five starred reviews and an instant spot on the New York Times bestseller list. A laugh-out-loud story filled with eccentric, endearing characters and featuring an exciting new format -- a novel interspersed with comic-style graphic sequences and full-page black-and-white illustrations by K. G. Campbell -- Flora & Ulysses was named a finalist for the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize; chosen by Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, Amazon, and Common Sense Media as a Best Book of the Year; and designated a Parents' Choice Gold Award Winner.

It's no wonder that Kate DiCamillo was selected to be the U.S. National Ambassador for Young People's Literature for 2014-2015. Of that mission, and on the power of stories, she says, "When we read together, we connect. Together, we see the world. Together, we see one another."

Born in Philadelphia, Kate DiCamillo lives in Minneapolis, where she faithfully writes two pages a day, five days a week.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By C. M. Butler on August 24, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Mercy Watson is a fine addition to the cannon of early readers. It's funny and fun!

Mercy is a pig who lives with Mr. and Mrs. Watson, who treat her as more a member of the family than a pet. When Mercy decides one night that she's too afraid to sleep alone, she crawls into bed with the Watsons. When the bed starts to sink through the Watson's floor, It's Mercy who runs off to find help - sort of!

You simply cannot wait to turn the page and find out why Mercy's doing what she's doing and how it's going to end. The plot twists are fun and logical, while matter-of-fact and unexpected. The illustrations are utterly charming. It's recommended for readers 6-8, but it really is fun for the whole family.

I can't wait to see what Mercy will do next!
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By julzshamrock on February 19, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Mercy Watson to the Rescue by Kate Dicamillo

This was a fun book to read. The chapters flowed very well together. I kept thinking to myself that if I were a younger reader (ages 6-8), I would probably feel very grown-up reading this book, because it's the same size as adult books, but the font is bigger, and there are a lot of great illustrations to help tell the story.

I also enjoyed the personification of Mercy, the pig, who was portrayed as a member of the Watson family, who sleeps in her own bed, in her own room, and her owners are more like her parents. Children can relate to this depiction more easily. Mercy has childish qualities, such as being afraid of the dark and climbing into bed with Mr. and Mrs. Watson. She has a favorite food, which she even dreams about. She has a favorite nieghbor, because Baby Lincoln is nice to Mercy and shares cookies with her.

Some silly tones in this book include Baby Lincoln's older sister who lives with her, who is the antgonist to Mercy. She believes pigs belong on a farm, not in thier own bed, or at the kitchen table eating toast. There is a funny twist to this story that leads Mercy to be a hero in her owner's eyes, but not

necessarily Mercy's intent.....

The early reader could easily get attached to Mercy and her adventures, and I like that her story continues in other books as well.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on March 13, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I really reccomend this book because some people would really get a kick out of it like I did! Mercy really loves to eat waffles , and Mercy always dreams about them too. I really hope you will think the same that I did about this book! Sometimes it's funny and sometimes it can be a mystery and other times you might think it will become sad but it all ties up in the end! My favorite part in the book is when Mercy kept on dreaming about her waffles and butter! I hope you will like this book as much as I did too! Once again it is a great book! I hope you like it too!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By KidsReads on November 1, 2005
Format: Hardcover
MERCY WATSON TO THE RESCUE is a rollicking romp of a story about a beloved young pig named Mercy who lives with Mr. and Mrs. Watson in a comfortable family home. Mercy finds adventure and excitement at every turn in his simple suburban neighborhood when all he wants is some hot buttered toast.

Mercy, the pig, is a single-minded, simple creature. His love for hot buttered toast and his quest to find a snack sets the stage for all kinds of adventure. When Mercy jumps into bed with his owners, the Watsons, the bed begins sinking into the floor. The Watsons think Mercy is running for help when he jumps off the bed. What they don't know is that he is hunting for hot buttered toast. Mercy sets off late at night through the neighborhood and stirs up all kinds of trouble. Will Mercy get help for the Watsons, or will he just fulfill his late night craving for toast?

Mercy meets up with kind Baby Lincoln and her cranky older sister, Eugenia Lincoln, on his late night travels. MERCY WATSON TO THE RESCUE is filled with plenty of good clean fun and hijinks. It is short enough to be enjoyed in one evening like a picture book or spread out over several evenings if a young child is just learning to read.

Kate DiCamillo is a very talented and versatile author. This new series about Mercy is aimed at a much younger audience than her previous novels, which include the much loved BECAUSE OF WINN-DIXIE and the Newbery Award-winning THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX. I think that younger readers will enjoy her storytelling just as much as older elementary school kids have. Chris Van Dusen adds to the enjoyment of the story with his colorful, sunny illustrations, which bring the character of Mercy to life.

Young readers will gobble up each new installment of this series just like Mercy gobbles up his hot buttered toast every morning.

--- Reviewed by Renee Kirchner (
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Butterscotch on November 11, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Mr. and Mrs. Watson are the proud owners of Mercy, their pampered pig, in this adorable chapter book. In this first adventure, Mercy climbs into bed with the Watsons' one night and they soon find themselves in distress when the bed collapses under their combined weight. It's Mercy to the rescue (sort of) when a trip to the neighbors house results in a call to the fire department and the rescue of Mr. and Mrs. Watson from their collapsing bed. Mercy is treated as a hero and given his favorite dish of all - hot buttered toast! The story is fun and active, but the best part of this book isn't the writing - it's the illustrations. The cartoon-like drawings are fun, retro, and extremely vibrant, and perfectly capture Mercy in his adventures. The illustrations add everything to this book and the thoughtful details in the drawings made it a very fun read. Recommended!
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