Virján’s porcine protagonist is back in another rollicking, rhyming bedtime book (What This Story Needs Is a Pig in a Wig, 2015).
This big-haired pig just wants some shut-eye. She knows the routine: tub, brushed teeth, combed hair, clean sheets, and a stuffed animal. All the other farm animals seem ready to retire too, but they come with an assortment of onomatopoeic orchestrations: quack, honk, bark, coo, ribbit, meow, neigh, moo, cluck, hiss, baa, and peep! Soon the pig is smothered by farm friends settling down in bed with her, making a lot of noise. Saturated digital illustrations are funny and easy to read, especially when the sounds are set in display type next to the corresponding animals. While “neigh” might be hard to decode for some new readers, the placement of that word right next to the horse’s open mouth makes it a snap. Each animal’s eyes reflect the happiness it feels at being in the room with all its friends, but readers will be drawn to the pig, whose eyes look exhausted, complete with bags under them. “Be quiet. Keep mum. Pipe down and HUSH! What this bedtime needs is a SHUSH!” With these words, the stern swine sends this menagerie packing. Easy words, a funny premise, and droll illustrations add up to a book that will satisfy, even after many readings.
The ending, complete with a change of sleeping venue, will bring a chuckle to lap listeners and new readers alike. Zzzzzzzz. (Early reader. 3-7)