Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

A Piglet Named Mercy

A Piglet Named Mercy

Kate DiCamillo
Illustrator:  Chris Van Dusen 
Picture Book  Series
For ages 4 to 6
Candlewick, 2019   ISBN: 978-0763677534

Mr. and Mrs. Watson live in an ordinary house on an ordinary street, and they live very ordinary and predictable lives. They clean their house, take care of their yard, wash their car, and on the whole they are quite content with things. Most of the time. One day Mr. Watson does wonder if they are, perhaps, “too predictable.” He even goes so far as to admit that there are times when he sometimes wishes that “something different would happen.” Mrs. Watson believes that their lives are “just fine as they are,” but it turns out that she is wrong.

One night a little piglet falls out of the back of a truck and she makes her way to the Watson’s house. When Mr. Watson goes to collect his newspaper the next morning he finds a small piglet resting her chin on the paper.

Eugenia Lincoln, one of the neighbors, is not at all pleased to see the piglet. She does not approve of piglets, or surprises, or anything that is in the least bit interesting or unpredictable. Her sister, Baby Lincoln, is very fond of piglets and surprises. Like the Watsons, she is quite taken with the new arrival and quickly sets about getting a bottle of milk for the baby animal. It isn’t long before the Watsons find out that their little guest is going to change their lives in countless ways.

In 2005 a pig with an epic personality hit the book stage. Her name was Mercy Watson and the six books written about her adventures soon became favorites with children and grownups alike. What we never knew is how Mercy came to be living with Mr. and Mrs. Watson. Thankfully, this question is now answered. With the same touches of humor that made the Mercy Watson chapter books so beloved, Kate DiCamillo and Chris Van Dusen bring us Mercy Watson’s opening story. We get to visit Deckawoo Drive, and we get to see how Mercy charmed her human family and developed a taste for hot buttered toast.