Mary Stolz more commonly wrote YA fiction, but had a few younger books as well. This one is about a little boy named Emmett. A marvelous little boy obsessed with pigs.
Emmett lived in the city. Near a zoo.
A zoo with no pigs.
He asked his parents if they could go see a pig sometime.
"Can we go to the country someday? Can we go to the country and see a pig?"
"Someday," said his father.
I love this illustration. It is just in the background of a larger picture of Emmett with some of the animals in his building, but I had to get a close up because it is super. What a harridan that woman looks. And how dopey the guy is!
Emmett's room. His mother would not let him have a real pig in his room. "Pigs live on farms where there is a lot of space and grass and dirt."
So Emmett just thought about one day owning a pig of his own.
He told his parents about what he would do when he was grown up.
When the sun goes down, I will sit on a stump and admire all my pigs.
But Emmett did not think about pigs all the time. He had to think about school. He had to think about playing, about books. He had to think about spaceships and firemen, and about his friends. He had to wonder what makes an elevator go. He had to wonder how many glasses of water to ask for when he went to bed.
For a boy without a pig, Emmett was very busy.
I love Emmett.
This so perfectly encapsulates childhood. There is so much to think about.
Then one morning Emmett woke up and it was his birthday. And as he opened his presents he noticed there was no present from his father and mother.
"We are going for a drive in the car." As they drove, Emmett kept thinking and asking what would be waiting for them at the end.
"Is my present very small?" he asked.
It is pretty small," said his father.
"Will it get bigger?"
"Yes," said his mother.
"It will get bigger."
And there was a real live pig farm!
Emmett got to pick out his very own pig.
He named the pig King Emmett. They had a lovely day, running and playing together.
Then, when the sun was going down, King Emmett went back in the pig pen. Emmett sat on a stump to admire them.
All his dreams were coming true.
Unfortunately they had to leave King Emmett and go home. But Mr. Carson, the farmer promised to take good care of Emmett's pig while Emmett was in the city.
The next day, Emmett told everyone about the pig he owned.
He wrote letters to Mr. Carson with messages for King Emmett.
Once in a while he sent a nickel of his allowance, so that King Emmett could have a treat.
And he dreamed of when he would go back to see his pig.