Sep 12, 2011

The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs

The True Story of the Three Little Pigs (Viking Kestrel Picture Books)

The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka
Illustrated by Lane Smith

     "Everybody knows the story of the Three Little Pigs. Or at least they think they do."  These are the opening lines of The True Story of the Three Little Pigs.  In this fantastic retelling, we hear the story from the point of view of the wolf.  According to him, he was trying to bake a birthday cake for his grandmother and he ran out of sugar.  He was suffering from a terrible sneezing cold but since he really wanted to bake for his grandma, he decided to go and try to find some sugar.  His closest neighbor was a pig, and "he wasn't too bright." "I mean who in his right mind would build a house of straw?"  He was knocking on the door when his nose started to itch. He felt a sneeze coming and he huffed and snuffed, and sneezed and the whole house fell down.  "Right in the middle of the pile of straw was the First Little Pig -dead as a doornail."  To wolf, it seemed like a shame to waste "a perfectly good ham dinner lying there on the straw." So he ate it up.  Something similar happened with the second pig and by the time he got to the third pig, and  this one bad mouthed the wolf's grandmother, wolf tried to break in and that's when he was arrested by the cops.  But see, it wasn't his fault, he was just a wolf with a bad cold in need of a cup of sugar.
     The True Story of the Three Little Pigs is one of my favorite fairy tale retellings.  The clever text by Scieszka is complemented beautiful by Lane Smith's illustrations (author of the wonderful books Grandpa Green and It's a Book).  Aside from being a truly enjoyable read aloud, it's also a great book to use in the classroom to show point of view (narrated in first person).  One to have at home and in the classroom library as well.

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