Recommending persistence and self-assurance, this picture book features a young piglet who grows increasingly impatient at being told “Not yet.” “Not yet” ready to ride a bicycle without training wheels, successfully flip pancakes, join the baseball team (“6 and up,” a sign reads), play violin, or ride the big kid rides, the piglet finally erupts in frustration over an uncompleted 1,000-piece puzzle: “How do I get to YET?” A guardian responds, “It takes growing and doing,/ patience and time,” describing the amount of waiting, failing, collaboration, patience, and “GRIT” involved in achieving one’s goals. Spare, gently rhyming text shows Cocca-Leffler’s proficiency in the area of uplifting children, while heartwarming pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations empathically show the piglet’s struggles, likely to the amusement of young readers. An encouraging reminder for those learning how to focus themselves on the present instead of agonizing over the future. Ages 3–5. (Jan.)
Persistence pays off for a piglet.
Frustrations, depicted in a series of vignettes, overwhelm a young pig when success seems constantly out of reach, or “not yet.” Not yet ready to bike without training wheels, not yet tall enough for the roller coaster, not yet old enough for the baseball team, not yet in tune on the violin. Even the pancakes aren’t ready to flip. “YET, YET, YET!” wails the piglet. “How do I get to YET?” the piglet asks a grown-up pig in a purple tunic. The instructive response, that things improve, often with practice, is delivered in a rhymed text that goes down easy: “The path to YET / is not a straight line. / It takes growing and doing, / patience and time.” A few more vignettes demonstrate that there will be challenges along the way: Arithmetic problems go awry, spelling means mistakes, knitting is tricky, and watercolor painting drips. “You’ll get sad and angry, / but don’t you quit— / you have power and courage, / and that’s called GRIT.” Cocca-Leffler’s art is lighthearted, and the activities of the child pig will be familiar to most. The value of a growth mindset—working toward small goals, waiting for the right time, and learning patience and resilience—is indisputable. Though the coaching advice here feels slightly formulaic and the rhymed delivery echoes similarly inspirational offerings, the piglet is winsomely appealing and the accomplishments within reach of the audience. (This book was reviewed digitally with 9-by-18-inch double-page spreads viewed at 37.3% of actual size.)
Encouraging. (Picture book. 3-7)