“'There's cold chicken inside it,' replied the Rat briefly; 'coldtonguecoldhamcoldbeefpickledgherkinssaladfrench

'O stop, stop,' cried the Mole in ecstacies: 'This is too much!'”
-- from
The Wind in the Willows

Monday, April 27, 2009

Little Oink • Picture book

Little Oink
by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Jen Corace
Spring 2009 • Chronicle Books • Picture book • Ages 3 and up
"When I grow up, I'm going to let my kids clean up their rooms as much as they want."
Story: From the creators of Little Pea and Little Hoot comes this tidy tale of a decidedly different pig. Little Oink is a neat little fellow. Clean, clean, clean, that's all he wants to do. But Mama and Papa won't have it! They say in order to be a respectable pig, he has to learn to make a proper mess. "Don't come out until your room is a pigsty," they chide. A humorous twist on a universal dilemma.
Story behind the story: Amy's sister, Beth, came up with the idea for the story -- and her daughter wrote the book's last line (SPOILER ALERT: "And they all lived hap-pig-ly ever after.") When asked if there was anything she disliked as a child that her parents insisted on, Amy replied: "
As a kid, I always hated getting presents. My parents would insist on getting me all these great presents on my birthday every year. Can you believe that? Oh, wait. I totally loved that. It was going to the doctor that I hated. Sorry about the mix-up." Oh, and in the random information department, illustrator Jen Corace is a master at bumper cars but is unable to properly operate any other type of licensed vehicle.

The author, illustrator and publisher have created loads of downloads for your classroom or library including an event kit (with masks, pun activities, a Pin the tail on Oink game and more), a Little Oink song, poster, super cute video for “Little Oink” (narrated by the author's nephew) and video of the author on tour!

FYI: all the review copies for this title have been sent and reviews are in the works; please check back and click on the "comments" link below to read what your colleagues have to say.


Amy said...

I just got my Little Oink book in the mail today and I had to read it during my planning. I absolutely loved it! The illustrations are great, the book is really well made, and the text perfect for young readers. I am adding this to my collection of books to not only share with my students, but put away for my future children. Thank you for a wonderful read.

Rating - 4/5

Amy Allega

Aubrey Heusser said...

This is an adorable book to read to the 3-7 year old range. The pictures complement the story perfectly, adding something to the words but not distracting or cluttered. The "message" is fun, the kind of silliness that preschoolers love, and Oink is a loveable character that kids can identify with - he does what he has to, even though it's sometimes not what he'd prefer. The puns will entertain parents/teachers too.

I give this one a 5 - worth planning a picnic for it if you have a preschooler along.

Lisa Kennedy said...

Why couldn't all parents be like Little Oink's? No more fights over messy rooms, dirty clothes, toys on the floor! It's every child's dream. I know that every child will love this book. The illustrations are hilarious and the last line will bring huge guffaws from all. Little Oink will be a wonderful addition to any classroom or media center. A definite 5 out of 5!!!

Anonymous said...

When I received this book today my 6th graders were in the middle of writing their own animal picture books, so the timing was perfect. I told them that after I receive this book I am to write a blog on how well I like it. I asked three of my students to read the story and look at it for all the story strategies that they need to remember to include in their story. They all agreed that they could tell what Little Oinks problem was. They found many examples of figurative language, realizing that the story itself was something that was more than one that was written for little children. The book showed a good example how the illistrater took the story and used their visualizations to set up a very interesting story. All three of my students said that Little Oink should get a 4 or 5 in the picnic basket. Because I was able to use it as a good learning tool, I agreed with them and give it a 5.
Jackie Purificato
Consultant teacher

Michelle said...

I give this book a 5. The illustrations are adorable and the text is a lot of fun. I plan on adding this title to my collection and I can't wait to share it at story time!

Amy said...

I just got my Little Oink copy today and couldn't wait to read it! What an adorable story! I know that my younger readers will love hearing this read aloud over and over. This is now a new favorite of mine. 5 out of 5.

El said...

A cute, entertaining story. This book is sure to illicit laughter form young readers and listeners. The illustrations work well to extend the story. Truly delightful! 4/5

jlarkin said...

Little Oink arrived here at my school today and I finally got a free minute to sit down and read it! I LOVED the illustrations and the stark white background - it really made everything jump off the page. And the story was very cute - loved the twist at the end when he finally gets to go outside and play. My only complaint? I wish the print was larger - especially for young readers.

4 out of 5!

Lisa said...

This is a wonderful book to read to Kindergarten or first graders. Young children will enjoy Little Oink who's parents force him to "make a mess". They will be able to relate to his feelings since most all children have the experience of being told to "clean up." I think readers will also be amused with Little Oink's solution at the end of the story. In addition to being an amusing story, this picture book has wonderful illustrations.

Mrs. Horne said...

This story was very cute...I hadn't read anything by this author but will be looking for the other books she has out.

I loved most the simplicity of the writing, the cute and engaging character, and the irony of Little Oink's life! I can see my son falling in love with this book!

Great job...

Picnic Basket Rating: 5/5

Lindsay Horne
New Kent Middle School
New Kent, VA

Lemon the Duck said...

Little Oink is a unique individual. He learns that he has to follow the rules of ettiquette, yet still finds outlets to express his passion. A wonderful life lesson.
I also liked the use of jazzy words and can picture young children using them in their expressive language.
I understood why the style of font was used, but didn't find it reader friendly.
This is a story children can connect to and will want to hear over and over again.
I rate this book a 4 out of 5.
Laura Backman
Reading Specialist
Author of "Lemon the Duck"

Elizabeth said...

How cute. The pig who wanted to be neat and not dirty. He got his way in the end in a most unexpected way. The pictures were great.

I would rate this book 5 out of 5.

Brian said...

Little Oink is a great addition to Little Pea and Little Hoot. My family and I loved Little Pea best, probably because some of the things said were exactly the same as in our family and also because it was the first one of the Little books that we read. After that we knew what was coming in Little Hoot and Little Oink.

Nevertheless, Little Oink is great. My kids love how the parents demand the exact things most kids want to do. If it's the first of the three Little books you read, it'll probably become your favorite of them all.

Rating: 4 - Recommend without Reservation.

Mandy said...

I received Little Oink and immediately read it. It is a wonderful book with a very unpredictable plot. Even though I teach 5th grade, I am planning on using it to teach about perspective. When you look through others’ eyes and think about their world, you often see a brand new way of looking at life. I brought this book home and read it to my own children and they loved the story. They begged the next night to read it again. I would highly recommend this book!
Score 5/5

Pat Kramer said...

A delightful book for the younger kids. It's definitely going to be well received in our Kindergarten and First Grade classrooms. The activities and extras on the website are a great bonus. I wish more publishers would offer so many extras.

Rating 5/5
Pat Kramer
Third Grade Teacher
Palm Harbor, FL

ahslibrarian said...

Little Oink does not make much noise because he is the anti-pig. Instead of the stereotypical ham he is a neatnik, and that is such a contradiction that it makes for a nice diversion. Little Oink may or may not be the favorite book of parents or adults because it might remind them of their own litter. Young children should identify with the character and will certainly be able to draw some comparisons of their own. Everyone will applaud the ending.

The illustrations are bright, intriguing and well organized to accompany the cleverly written text. The movement of the illustrations and the ample use of plain white pages reinforce the cleanliness of Little Oink even when he is trying to be messy.

The best uses of this book are likely to be in homes, daycares, and pre-kindergarten classrooms because of the subject and the topic. In its most basic form Little Oink is a concept book that will receive occasional use. One possible extension might include the book as part of a larger unit on pigs. Everyone needs to know why pigs like mud, right? Pigs need to wallow in the mud to stay cool because they do not have sweat glands. Read this book aloud with some children and see if it stirs up a stink in your neighborhood.

4 out of 5

John Parker
Media Coordinator
Andrews High School
50 HS Drive
Andrews, NC 28901

Anonymous said...

I love to organize and keep things neat so I could relate to Little Oink's dilemma. What a wonderful way to teach young ones that stereotypes just don't fit! Be yourself! The illustrations are charming and the writing is simple enough for young readers yet enjoyable for adults. 5 stars!

Colleen G
Hercules, CA

Carrie Blagg, Cherokee Elementary School said...

LOVE IT! LOVE IT! LOVE IT! How could you not with the sweet illustrations, fun text, and a "neat" little pig? 5 out of 5!

Martine Battista said...

I really like this book. Little Oink is so sweet. I don't have any classes coming in for story time this late in the school year, but I just have to share this with some kids! I won't be able to wait until school starts up again. I give this picnic treat a 5.
Denair Elementary School Library
Denair, CA

Susan Mello said...

What a wonderful character for young children to identify with... Little Oink starts out doing the exact same things the students do and then the reader figures out that he doesn't like messiness. It makes being clean and neat seem cool.

I give this a 5 because children will fall in love with the little pig and maybe even clean up a bit...

SunshineFamily said...

Rating 4/5. Very cute book, my first graders picked it up immediately. I like the simplicity of the language, especially for emergent readers.Great for any early childhood library.

Rebecca said...

My daughter loved this book. The drawings are wonderful and we loved reading about him. The text was perfect for a toddler/kindergarter to understand and I have reccommended it to our K class. Thank you for the enjoyable book.

Allyson Maiolo said...

Love the pictures and the story, but most of all, I love the wonderful, juicy vocabulary in this story. I look forward to using it to teach my kids how to tune in to interesting words in the stories they read.


Anonymous said...

The illustrations, and the design of the book, are beautiful. The illustrations are ink drawings and watercolor with hardly any elements left without an outline, and with the same set of colors used throughout the book.

As a read-aloud story, it may require the reader to read slowly and help children to look closely at the illustrations that tell stories not included in the text.

The text is clearly meant for children 3 and over, as it does not hold the appeal of sing-songy rhyming in books for younger children.

The storyline is cute, as it is about a pig that enjoys cleaning and organizing but is required by his parents, if he wants to be a proper pig, to make a mess. It's a great attempt at reverse psychology! Perhaps if I force my children to make messes they will want and enjoy cleaning up?!?! Probably not.

This is a fun book! I give it a Picnic Basket rating of 5 out of 5!

Sarah Oyerinde
Marion, Indiana

Sonia Acone said...

What's a little piggy to do? Poor Little Oink. He can't go outside until his room is a pigsty. I love this story and can't wait to add it to our library's collection. The illustrations are adorable and our little ones are going to love the story!
We are definately adding Ms. Rosenthal's other titles to our collection as well.

Tina's Blog said...

Little Oink, the latest by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Jen Corace is too cute! I love the storyline: Little Oink enjoys being neat and clean. His parents want him to make a mess since that's what pigs do. He half-heartedly takes part in messing things up, and once that is done he is allowed to go and play. What does Little Oink choose as his game? House! And he is able to clean things up to his heart's content. The colorful illustrations against a white backdrop are eye-catching and this third "Little" (the first two are Little Pea and Little Hoot) book is just as adorable as the first two.
Rating 5/5

Tara said...

Little Oink is a very enjoyable book. The illustrations are fantastic and could easily stand on their own. Amy Krouse Rosenthal uses language very creatively. I loved how she used common phrases and turned them around to fit the life of a pig. My three-year old got a kick out of the idea of “mess up” time. This book is great for a wide variety of ages. Small children will enjoy it at its most basic level while school aged children will be able to pull out some of the more advanced nuances of language. Little oink is great for a simple read aloud as well as starting point for writing projects.


Tara McKernan
Special Education Teacher

amorrison said...

I read this story to my first grade class and they loved it. They thought it was so funny that Little Oink's parents were wanting him to MESS up his room. My students had a little performance and one of the songs was about clean pigs. A few connected the song to the story. My 1st graders rated the book as a 5.

Natalie H. said...

Too cute! I shared this book with a group of pre-K kiddos and they loved it. It really got them thinking! The story provides an opportunity to talk about picking up after ourselves and doing the sometimes not-so-fun tasks. We got a big kick out of "hap-pig-ly" ever after! I think this book would be appropriate for ages 3-7 year olds and give it 4/5. I think this is such a sweet book and am happy I had the opportunity to read it.

Kris said...

As a fan of Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Jen Corace’s previous books Little Pea and Little Hoot, I was not surprised to see that Little Oink is just as endearing. The illustrations are clean and attractive, with plenty of white space -- much to Little Oink’s liking, I’m sure. There are many interesting touches to the illustrations that may not be noticed in just one sitting, like the food in the wall-hangings at school.

The story itself is wonderfully kid-appropriate, one to which many children will be able to relate. The type may make it difficult reading for beginning readers, but I imagine it being an oft-requested read-aloud for young children, preschool age and up. Mama and Papa Pig are so delightfully messy, with Papa getting paint all over his shirt and leaving his clothes in a heap on the floor, and Mama deliberately pouring excessive water on her potted plants that have soil spilling out of the pots! Not only will children see the humor, but hopefully they will also find an example of how those with different ideas about things can still get along with each other.

I give Little Oink a 5 out of 5.

Kris Lill
Allen County Public Library
Fort Wayne, IN

deltay said...

A fantastic children's picture book. The storyline is cute and amusing - making a mess! not cleaning your room! Imagine that - while the pictures are adorable. The one thing I didn't particularly like was the font chosen for the text; it's fine for grown-ups and all, but for little kids still learing to read, the 'u's are a little difficult to differentiate. Otherwise, a lot of fun.
Rating - 4.5

(Now for a 5 year old's opinions):
Good! My favourite part was when the Mommy and Daddy read a bedtime story to Little Oink. I liked the pictures and the story.

Anonymous said...

I read Little Oink to my 4 year old niece as soon as I got it, and she loved it. The story and the pictures were great, it kept me and my niece entertained. This is a good book for young children.

I give this book a 4.

David P.

Tasses said...

My review is up on Reading RumpusThank you Picnic Basket. This copy went to a little girl who loves piggies when I was done reading it :-)

Tasses said...

OOOPS.... Got too excited and posted the above comment without my info:

I'm a Reading Specialist in Florida & I give this book a 5!

CPA Mom said...

I am SO late to this party but wanted to let you know what I thought of this beautiful book. I give it a 4 out of 5.

You can read my full review at http://cpamomva.blogspot.com/2009/05/little-oink.html

Dawn said...

I found this to be a delightful book that allows children to have fun with words, images and ideas of parents. Children will love the idea of making a mess instead of having to clean. The illustrations are as fun as the words and together they present a delightful read. I expect plenty of giggles from my primary students.

kokomana said...

Little Oink
By Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Illustrated by Jen Corace

My first experience with the Little… series was not a disappointment, but I wasn’t completely satisfied either. I greatly enjoyed the illustrations and found the story charming. The punning and double entendre add some nice humor as well. However, the story ends too abruptly – it just isn’t satisfying in some way. In reading it to first graders they agree with my assessment (I did not tell them my opinion), but they wanted more story, more illustrations, even less whitespace! They all liked the story, but wanted more of it. So let's see more of it next time Ms. Rosenthal!

Rating: 4 out of 5

Monica Bildner
Assistant Librarian
St. Rita School
Dallas, TX

LifeLongLearner said...

Just love this Little Oink book.

This Virginia Library Media Specialist gives it a 5/5 rating.

I loved the illustrations. I'm adding this to our collection and will love to see the giggles when used as a read aloud in the fall.

Susan Appleton said...

What a sweet book! I loved the funny little message and the illustrations are just precious! This has become one of my favorites and even my 5th graders loved it because they got the "humor" in it AND they could pick out literary elements such as plot, theme, characters, setting, etc. A great addition to our class library! Definitely a 5 out of 5!

Susan Appleton said...

What a sweet book! I loved the funny little message and the illustrations are just precious! This has become one of my favorites and even my 5th graders loved it because they got the "humor" in it AND they could pick out literary elements such as plot, theme, characters, setting, etc. A great addition to our class library! Definitely a 5 out of 5!

vandana's COLORS said...

Can you pls. tell me wht font have you used for this lovely book... I jus loved it!

Deborah Sloan said...

Know that I've left word with the publisher of LITTLE OINK to find out more about the font. Stay tuned Vandana's Colors! -- Deborah Sloan, The Picnic Basket