Church, Caroline Jayne. Ping Pong Pig. New York: Holiday house, 2008.
Ping Pong Pig wants more than anything to fly. He practices constantly. The other farm animals are always hard at work on their chores. Ping Pong Pig doesn't do any chores. In fact he makes more for the other animals. In his attempts to fly, he destroys the orchard, the barns new pint job, the bee hives, and the hayricks. The other animals decide something must me done. They give Ping Pong Pig a trampoline and tell him to stay out of their way. To their surprise, he uses their gift to fix all the things he broke.
What I thought: What a cute book! Ping Pong Pig reminds me of a small incorrigible boy. This would be a great book to use to introduce kids to the concepts of responsibility and consequences. I like the simplicity of the animal drawings.
DiCamillo, Kate. Louise, The Adventures of a Chicken. Illus. Harry Bliss. New York: Joanna Colter, 2008.
Louise gets bored staying on the farm laying eggs. She longs for adventure. Her longings lead her to act. She leaves the farm to party with pirates, cavort with clowns, and browse a bazaar. In the end, Louise realizes there's nothing wrong with farm life. She is content to dream about adventures.
What I thought: What a wonderful idea--a bored chicken who sets off to have adventures. DiCamillo's book shows that there's some true to the old adage, "The grass is always greener..." The illustrations are just right. They are colorful and show Louise's adventures to the reader in great detail.