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*Rhyme (A Pig in Politics)* by William C. Marks, illustrated by Erin E. Gennow
Rhyme (A Pig in Politics)
by William C. Marks, illustrated by Erin E. Gennow
Ages 4-8 34 pages MPC Press International October 2008 Hardcover    

The City of Muck has been experiencing a serious crisis under the leadership of the present Penator. The small Pig community is too clean - the population no longer knows how to live like pigs!

After taking to heart the experience of rolling in mud and relaxing in its glorious richness, Rhyme decides to go into politics with the motto that wins over all, “Vote for Rhyme! Dirt Doesn’t Hurt!” The Sty Council elects Rhyme as Penator, and Muck begins to flourish under his successful leadership.

New homes, parks, schools, and churches are built with the determined motto "Dirt doesn’t hurt!" Pigs in Muck and neighboring communities are finally given a chance to intermingle with the creation of a connecting path between their towns, and everywhere is guaranteed mud on the paths for the blissful wallowing of all pigs. What joy Penator Rhyme brings to Muck!

Joyville, a town not far from Muck, draws the interest of Penator Rhyme, and after much deliberation, he gives up his Penatorship to embark on an educational journey in Joyville. For a year Rhyme goes to school, works in a restaurant, wanders the city, and writes to pen-pals about his experiences. Everything in Joyville is so different from Muck. Will Rhyme ever find happiness and contentment in Joyville, or is Muck the place for him? Dirt doesn’t hurt… Is that still true for Rhyme?

William Marks employs terrific renditions of famous speeches and names from American history to deliver a pig-flavored political campaign carried out at an early childhood level. The addition of creative colorful illustrations makes for a purely delightful book. The story is probably best for children around eight and up, but the pictures are a pleasure for children of all ages.

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