An extremely odd variant on "The Three Little Pigs."
It's time for Bork (two eyes, the sister), Gork (the one-eyed brother) and Nklxwcyz (three eyes, like their mom) to go out into the universe to find their own planets. Mom tells them to stick together and watch out for the Big Bad Robot. Bork chooses the red planet, and Gork is enchanted by the golden rings of another, but Nklxwcyz chooses Neptune and builds his house of space stuff and space junk. When the Big Bad Robot smashes Bork's and Gork's homes, they flee to Nklxwcyz, whose house is so strong that the Robot gets stuck in the telescope/chimney and explodes.Â The three children call mom, as exhorted, and she comes to tuck all three into bed. The green-skinned, red-haired or bald little aliens careen around the starry black universe with jetpacks and clear, round headgear, and there is some faint echo of charm in " 'Little alien! Little alien!' it broinked. 'COME OUT OF HIDING!' / 'Not by the orbit of this ring I'm riding!' " (The classic dialogue varies slightly from sibling to sibling.) It fails the logic test, though: The Big Bad Robot is fearsome, but there really doesn't seem to be a good reason for him to go after these kids.
This one may be too stuck on the arc of the original tale to come alive in its own right.Â (Picture book. 5-7)Copyright Kirkus 2011 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
This boisterous galactic retelling of "The Three Little Pigs" pits resourceful pea-green alien children against a skyscraper-size robot. Siblings Bork, Gork, and Nklxwcyz live with their mother "in a snug, cozy crater on a tiny little planet." When their home " too crowded," the kids head into the solar system to seek new abodes. Two-eyed sister Bork finds an unmanned rover on a red planet ("Awesome!"). Her one-eyed brother Gork boards a satellite spinning around a ringed planet ("Whee!"). Three-eyed Nklxwcyz prefers a planet with "thirteen moons, and refreshing breezes." Soon the Big Bad Robot chases Bork to Gork's home; recalling their mother's advice to "stick together," they fly to Nklxwcyz's brick house. Fearing's (The Book That Eats People) collages lend a down-to-earth feel to the interplanetary action. McNamara (How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin?) is faithful to the original story, down to the climactic chimney, but has bountiful fun along the way (" ‘Little alien! Little alien!' bleeped the Robot. ‘Pull over! Pull over!' "). This is no astronomy class, but readers can guess the unnamed planets by description, and they'll have fun pronouncing Nklxwcyz. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)[Page ]. Copyright 2010 PWxyz LLC
PreS-Gr 3--With its broad humor and a knowing wink to folktale conventions, this delightful reworking of "The Three Little Pigs" has potential to become a crowd-pleasing favorite. When Mama's cozy house in a crater on Mercury grows too crowded, she sends her three little aliens out into the universe to find a planet of their own. She warns them to stay together and watch out for the big, bad robot: "And call me every once in a while." The youngsters strap on their jet packs, bypassing Venus ("Too hot"), Earth ("Too crowded"), and meteors. When pigtailed Bork spies a shiny space rover, she ignores the warning to stick together and settles on Mars. One-eyed Gork is smitten with Saturn's rings. It is left to sensible Nklxwcyz to travel on until he reaches Neptune, where he builds a safe, sturdy home. And just in time, too, for with "Greep Boink Meep Peeedily Deeep Ork Eep," the Big Bad Robot is on his way. Fearing's hand-drawn cartoon illustrations rendered digitally with collage techniques offer bug-eyed, green aliens and an enjoyable mix of science and playful details. An author's note refers readers to NASA's website for more facts about the solar system. This lively, well-told twist on a classic tale will capture the hearts of a wide audience.--Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA[Page 125]. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.