Beatrix Potter didn’t even start writing books until she was in her 30s, but she was successful on her very first try. The Tale of Peter Rabbit was her first attempt at writing picture books, and it was a very good one. The story and the many books that followed have become classics, with many parents reading the same stories to their kids that they read growing up. After Peter Rabbit’s story, the British author and illustrator began writing kids’ books full-time, all of which have been translated into many different languages and in many different forms – like cartoons and even a ballet.
One of her follow-ups to Peter Rabbit was The Tale of Pigling Bland. This story is about a pig and his brother named Alexander who are made to go to the market because there isn’t enough food to feed all the piglets. Pigling is a sensible pig but his brother is anything but. Alexander immediately gets into hot water by losing his papers and eventually gets taken away by the police. The title character sets out to find his brother only to get lost in the woods, spending the night in an unfamiliar chicken coop. A gruff farmer spots him in the morning and allows him to stay, but the pig doesn’t know if he should trust the farmer. His suspicions are confirmed when our hero discovers the farmer’s second pig whom he plans to turn into bacon and ham. The other pig named Pig Wig hatches a plot to run away with the main character so neither will have to face an undesirable end. They both sneak away in the morning and almost get caught, but they eventually escape and dance away, celebrating their freedom.
Beatrix Potter delights in pen-and-ink drawings and watercolors in The Tale of Pigling Bland and her many other books. She does not disappoint in any of her books. They are colorful, yet soft and have a unique style.
How many authors of books geared for children ages 3 to 8 have creations that have lasted for more than a century? Not many can draw readers into a story in the way Beatrix Potter has. Pigling’s story is a wonderful bedtime story, so make it a part of your child’s bedtime routine. It doesn’t disappoint.