Alice, in addition to her wacky little sister Rosie and her supercilious older brother Oliver, has a problem - she can't pronounce "animal". When her teacher announces that the class topic will be farm animals, Alice gloomily looks forward to a semester of teasing. And when her class takes a field trip to a farm and Alice finds an unexpectedly adorable little pig, she knows that more disappointments are in store. In a surprise ending, Alice gets her "pig", Oliver is vanquished, and even Rosie is temporarily dismayed.
This is a classic "in the middle" story, Alice's trials and triumphs as a middle child and her longing for a pet of her own will resonate with children - middle or not! The illustrations are sweet and just a little zany, just like Alice's family.
Verdict: I highly recommend the Alice stories to all beginning chapter readers. They perfectly capture the trials and tribulations of middle children, growing up, and families with plenty of funny spots as well.
ISBN: 978-0802853356; Published March 2008 by Eerdmans; Borrowed from the library; Purchased for the library and added to my personal wishlist