The Three Ninja Pigs By Corey Rosen Schwartz Illustrated by Dan Santat

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This book gets points for being an excellent (and funny) story that actually uses rhyme to good effect (unlike a lot of the picture books I’ve been reading lately).  A retelling of the Three Little Pigs, these 3 pigs decide to go on the offensive and prepare themselves for a wolf attack by taking classes in martial arts.

The first little pig dabbles in Aikido, the second little pig takes Jujitsu (but only masters the basics), and the third little pig becomes a dedicated practitioner of Karate (advancing through all of the belts and practicing regularly).

The first 2 pigs are no match for the wolf when he comes, but the third pig (the girl!) impresses the wolf, who runs away rather than test himself against her.

All 3 pigs rededicate themselves to their lessons and eventually open a dojo to train others in the martial arts.

I loved that the third pig was all “Bring it, Wolf.”  Girls (and girl pigs) can kick some serious wolf butt.  Great illustrations with lots of action – this should appeal to boys and girls alike.  The rhyming text will have everyone – even adults – rolling on the floor with laughter and rooting for those unstoppable pigs! Excerpt: The chase carried on to their sister’s. Pig Three was outside in her gi. “I’m a certified weapon, So watch where you’re steppin’. You don’t want to start up with me!” … Pig Three heaped some bricks in a pile. “I’ll show you what else I can do.” With one mighty whack, She split the whole stack! Pig Three said, “That could have been you.” [Sweet!]

* * * * Stars (Great!)

Reviewed by Karin Thogersen, YA Librarian

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