Pigsticks and Harold and the incredible journey / Alex Milway.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2015 Spring
Pigsticks Pig, with cake-loving hamster assistant Harold, embarks on an expedition to the Ends of the Earth. In three generously illustrated chapters we follow the explorers as they survive swamps, deserts, rickety rope bridges, malevolent mountain goats, and an avalanche. Deliberate disconnects between text and pictures (the art is slapdash-goofy) carry much of the humor in this tongue-in-cheek-funny, mildly satirical early chapter book.
Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2014 #5
Pigsticks Pig comes from a long line of august ancestors, or, as he puts it, forepigs. From the portraits on the wall we see that these include Emmeline Pighurst and Mustapha Snuffles. But a young pig has to make his own mark, and Pigsticks decides on an expedition to the Ends of the Earth. In the tradition of the great British explorers, he equips himself with the essentials, including a pith helmet and a teakettle, and proceeds to engage an assistant, a mild, anxious, cake-loving hamster named Harold. In three generously illustrated chapters we follow the explorers as they survive swamps, deserts, rickety rope bridges, malevolent mountain goats, and an avalanche to return home triumphant. The art is slapdash-goofy: Pigsticks looks like a yam with a snout, and Harold is a mustachioed hacky sack. Frequent disconnects between text and pictures carry much of the humor in this tongue-in-cheek-funny (everybody will have the pleasure of seeing right through Pigsticks's charming arrogance) early chapter book. Plums for grownups? Mild satire of the British-colonial mindset and some porcine parodies of cubist masterworks on Pigsticks's walls. sarah elli Copyright 2014 Horn Book Magazine.
PW Reviews 2014 February #4
Milway (the Mousehunter trilogy) steps into early reader territory with a book starring a pair of classic archetypes: the intrepid explorer and the put-upon assistant. In this case, the explorer is Pigsticks, a swoopy ovoid pig who resolves to travel to the Ends of the Earth like his ancestor Colonel Pigslet. "But unlike Colonel Pigslet," thinks Pigsticks, "I'll make it back alive!" He quickly conscripts a hamster named Harold into service (several promises of cake are involved), and the latter two-thirds of the book track their bumbling progress through jungle, desert, and mountain. Much like Harold with the team's enormous gear pack, Milway's ink illustrations (seen in b&w by PW) do some serious heavy lifting with regard to the storytelling; he uses sequential panels to show the duo's progress, and the art often reveals the truth behind the deadpan text. "Harold was definitely going deeper into the jungle than any hamster had gone before," he writes as Harold sinks into a pit of quicksand. An entertaining kickoff to a series of adventures, whether Harold likes it or not. Ages 5–9. (May)[Page ]. Copyright 2014 PWxyz LLC