Three clever pigs are at the forefront of trendsetting when it comes to The Big City. Thanks to them, the whole metropolis is enamored of the newest thing: oinking. The trouble? In time, oinking becomes passÃ©. Desperate to return to indispensability, the pigs think back to their days on the farm and decide to steal a line or two from their old pals Sheep, Frog and Duck. Unfortunately for them, trouble arrives when the former friends come knocking for their share of the pie. Palatini's wry spoof about Madison Avenue and its trends and their shelf life probably won't make much sense to kids, nor will in-jokes to things like HGX NEWS (which, truth be told, don't always make a lot of sense to adults, either). As for the art, the digital collage is eye-catching if not exceptional. Palatini's first foray into illustration is a noble experiment, featuring a sophisticated palette of purple, gray and lavender and depicting her protagonists in satiric style as grotesquely corpulent. That said, she may wish to consider spending slightly less time on her art in the future and more on what she does best of all: storytelling.Â (Picture book. 4-8)Copyright Kirkus 2011 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
In this story of "the most famous, fabulous, successful Big Pigs to ever leave the farm and make it in the BIG CITY," Palatini's brash digital artwork exudes physical comedy and urban glitz. But to understand her story--which nods to the fickle nature of fame and how media and celebrity can propagate silly trends--the book requires readers to have cultural knowledge that may be beyond their ken. The plot revolves around small marketing fads that pretend to be "big ideas"; the trio of pigs, enormously oversize and dressed as corporate fat cats, are living high on the hog, with "oink" mania sweeping the city. "Amazing! Genius! Brilliant!" gush reporters. "Who OINKED first? What's the next BIG OINK?" As with all fads, oinking gets old, and the pigs' attempt to stay on top results in an intellectual property dispute with some of their old barnyard friends. Kids may have trouble understanding what, exactly, the pigs have done that's so groundbreaking (which is part of the book's subversive charm). As a satire of contemporary pop culture, this will be best appreciated by media-savvy adults. Ages 4-8. (Mar.)[Page ]. Copyright 2010 PWxyz LLC
K-Gr 3--Three barnyard geniuses, Hogg, Hogg, and Hog, have taken the big city by storm with their amazing idea--"OINK!" The concept has brought these porkers clad in bow ties and suspenders straight to the top with a busy high-rise office and public adoration. But one day, the city people get tired of oinking, and Hogg, Hogg, and Hog have to think of the next big thing-quick. It looks as if their business is doomed until Hog remembers "the simple times...back on the farm. With Sheep. Duck. Frog." "What's the new oink, you ask? BAA! QUACK! RIBBIT!" This BIG IDEA puts the associates back on top, but success prompts an uncomfortable visit from three old friends. Palatini's smart storytelling bustles with all the ringing phones and over-the-top bluster of "big business" speech. Attentive text design places the emphasis in all the right places, making this a fun read-aloud. While the corporate concept might have resulted in a storytime snooze, Palatini has created a hilariously relatable tale by including all the old barnyard favorites. The absurdity of "OINK" is sure to bring on an attack of the giggles from children who love nonsensical humor. Quirky illustrations rendered digitally and mainly in pinks, lavenders, and grays suit this unusual story. Stock in Hogg, Hogg, and Hog is a safe investment for any collection.--Jayne Damron, Farmington Community Library, MI[Page 150]. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.