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THE WATER GIFT AND THE PIG OF THE PIG by Jacqueline Briggs Martin Kirkus Star

THE WATER GIFT AND THE PIG OF THE PIG

By Jacqueline Briggs Martin (Author) , Linda S. Wingerter (Illustrator)

Age Range: 5 - 8

Pub Date: April 21st, 2003
ISBN: 0-618-07436-8
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

This poignant story of the magical gift a girl shares with her grandfather is a gem. Isabel’s grandfather had a pig that was just like family to him, and the last of its litter, “The Pig of the Pig,” is shy Isabel’s best buddy. They accompany Grandfather “when he works the water gift,” following a Y-shaped branch to find water in even the driest of fields; Grandfather says it’s “the whole earth talking.” When Isabel’s pig goes missing, she rallies her own surprising courage, and, with Grandfather, uses the gift to find her precious friend. Martin’s magnificent prose will draw the audience in, and keep them there. The narration is at once the dreamy voice of a child and the detailed, imagery-laden voice of a master storyteller. Wingerter’s acrylic illustrations are swathed in soothing, subdued blues, greens, and tans—the tranquil tones follow the story’s gently sloping mood. The swirling texture of the images makes the sensations of the New England scenes nearly tangible. (author’s note) (Picture book. 5-8)