The Old Woman and Her Pig: An Old English Tale

3.25 avg rating
( 12 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780152014902: The Old Woman and Her Pig: An Old English Tale

When her newly bought pig will not go over the stile, an old woman tries to enlist the aid of some reluctant helpers so she can get home that night

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From Publishers Weekly:

A traditional English cumulative tale springs merrily to life in this retelling by the illustrator of Left & Right and The Biggest Birthday Cake in the World . An old woman buys "a pretty little pig," but can't get home when it refuses to go over a stile. She beseeches a dog to nip the reluctant porker, then a stick to beat the dog, a fire to burn the stick and so on, augmenting her plea until her demands are met, sending pig and owner on their way. Litzinger's sprightly text consists of strings of short, imperative sentences whose old-fashioned diction falls pleasingly on the ear: "Stick! stick! poke dog; dog won't nip pig; piggy won't jump over the stile; and I shan't get home tonight." Some older children may be bothered by the lack of a clearly articulated motive--beyond the apparent wish for punishment--behind the old woman's requests. However, the tale's effective pacing, with its gradual buildup, symmetrical resolution and happy ending, renders this a very minor flaw. The unpretentious sweetness of Litzinger's pastel-toned illustrations is well suited to her simple text. Of particular note is the tale's hammy co-star, whose funny facial expressions range from a beatific smile to a worried frown. Ages 2-6.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews:

Where there's a need for a less ferocious version of Joseph Jacobs's cumulative tale, this is a far better choice that Kimmel's awkward travesty (1992). Not illogically, the butcher becomes a farmer who's asked to ``yoke'' the ox, not ``kill'' him; otherwise, the changes here amount to softening verbs: ``beat'' becomes ``poke,'' ``quench'' becomes ``douse'' (a subtlety that will escape most preschoolers), the rope is to ``trip'' the farmer rather than ``hang'' him, and so on. Litzinger preserves Jacobs's wonderful rhythmical cadence and provides congenial little illustrations that focus more on solving the old woman's problem than on the threatened mayhem along the way. They don't have the lively action, humor, or panache of Paul Galdone's (1960, o.p.); nonetheless, pleasant. (Picture book. 2-7) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Litzinger, Rosanne
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers (1997)
ISBN 10: 015201490X ISBN 13: 9780152014902
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