Once upon a time three pigs built three houses, out of straw, sticks, and bricks. Along came a wolf, who huffed and puffed... So, you think you know the rest? Think again. With David Wiesner at the helm, it's never safe to assume too much. When the wolf approaches the first house, for example, and blows it in, he somehow manages to blow the pig right out of the story frame. The text continues on schedule--"...and ate the pig up"--but the perplexed expression on the wolf's face as he looks in vain for his ham dinner is priceless. One by one, the pigs exit the fairy tale's border and set off on an adventure of their own. Folding a page of their own story into a paper airplane, the pigs fly off to visit other storybooks, rescuing about-to-be-slain dragons and luring the cat and the fiddle out of their nursery rhyme.
Wiesner, Caldecott Medal recipient for Tuesday, and Caldecott Honor winner for both Sector 7 and Free Fall, prefers not to wait around until pigs fly. He gives them wings (or paper airplanes) and sets them on their way! In his latest flight of fancy, Wiesner uses shifting illustration styles and fonts to startle complacent readers into an imaginary world even as they ponder the conventional structure of story. His trademark crafty humor and skewed perspectives will tickle readers pink (even the nonporcine variety)! (Ages 4 and older) --Emilie Coulter
From Publishers Weekly
Even the book's younger readers will understand the distinctive visual code. As the pigs enter the confines of a storybook page, they conform to that book's illustrative style, appearing as nursery-rhyme friezes or comic-book line drawings. When the pigs emerge from the storybook pages into the meta-landscape, they appear photographically clear and crisp, with shadows and three dimensions. Wiesner's (Tuesday) brilliant use of white space and perspective (as the pigs fly to the upper right-hand corner of a spread on their makeshift plane, or as one pig's snout dominates a full page) evokes a feeling that the characters can navigate endless possibilities--and that the range of story itself is limitless. Ages 5-up.
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