Happy Monday, guys!
This week, we're reviewing The Unlikely Story of a Pig in the City by Jodi Kendall.
Read on for more about this delightful tale, and why it should absolutely be on your must-read list for fall!
MMGM is a feature hosted by the fabulous Shannon Messenger on her blog every week!
Expected publication: October 3rd 2017 by HarperCollins
Format read: ARC via publisher
The minute Josie holds Hamlet, she feels an instant connection. But there’s no room for Hamlet in the crowded Shilling household. And whoever heard of keeping a pig in the city? So it’s up to Josie to find her a forever home.
This modern-day homage to Charlotte’s Web is a heartwarming tale of family, belonging, and growing bigger when you’ve always felt small—perfect for fans of Katherine Applegate and Cammie McGovern.
In The Unlikely Story of a Pig in the City, author Jodi Kendall introduces us to Josie Shilling, who is struggling to find her place within her large, expansive family. So when her brother brings home a piglet named Hamlet, Jodie feels an instant connection. However, with Hamlet’s arrival, brings a whole host of new problems, including whether the family can actually continue to keep the pig.
There are many things to love about Kendall’s debut, beginning with the fact that it’s a nod to the children’s classic Charlotte’s Web. The strands of influence are clearly seen in how quickly Josie takes to Hamlet, and the willingness to protect him beyond on all measure, including taking on the city itself. Undoubtedly, any young reader captivated by Josie’s journey, will absolutely be entranced by E.B. White’s tale as well.
Outside of the homage to the classics, Kendall’s book is a realistic look at the ups-and-downs that comes with being a young tween growing up in today’s world. Josie has a packaged schedule full of gymnastics, friends and family, and Kendall does a solid job detailing the struggles that come with balancing all of these very different worlds. There’s an underlying nod to the fact that Josie is being asked to think of things that shouldn’t necessarily be her concern – particularly when it comes to financial challenges – but Kendall also depicts Josie handling it in a way that is sensible and age-appropriate.
Consequently, it’s not all together surprising that Josie dedicates so much time to trying to make the arrangements with Hamlet work. He’s very clearly a respite from some of the other challenges in her day-to-day life, and Kendall takes the opportunity to ask readers, to question what it means to have something that feels completely of their own, to love and to cherish.
While the journey to figure out a way to help Hamlet inevitably leads to solutions that cause highs and lows for Josie and her family, the end result is ultimately a triumph on the power of the ingenuity of youth, and how it brings a worthy solution to a complicated problem. With beautiful writing and thoughtful characterizations, make sure this is on your must-read list for the fall.
Highly, highly recommend, full stop.