We (my 4 year old and I) only recently found Elephant & Piggie because my mother, a kindergarten teacher, gave us a copy that her class enjoyed. We have a copy of Knuffle Bunny as well as a Pigeon book which are also whimsical books by Willems.
But. My 4 year old seriously LOVES Piggie and Elephant. I do too; we’re obsessed. He heartily laughs at each read we do, as if a buddy had told him a joke. The books are so simple; yet, they are not simple in the quiet matters that children think. Willems created a series of books about two friends, an elephant (Gerald) and a pig (Piggie).
I love the illustrations of the characters because my child is able to easily focus on their emotions. He loves being able to point and distinguish if Piggie is mad or sad. Plus, he’s easily able to follow along with the dialogue between the two characters.
After reading this book, I realized that many children’s books are cluttered with the language of the dialogue. For example, many books included the dialogue like Piggie said/Gerald screamed, and this book eliminates that kind of repetitive language. It’s as if Willems truly stepped in the mind of a four year old and wrote these hilarious characters.
Furthermore, Gerald and Piggie are just plain funny. We giggle each time we read their stories. The plots are always simple (young readers can easily follow along) about things like waiting, or playing catch, or sneezing.
If you haven’t tried these out, I highly recommend them; I’m positive your children will giggle and enjoy Elephant and Piggie.