Pow Pow Pig Snow action by Anh Do. Illus. by Peter Cheong
In this, the 5th installment of the Pow Pow Pig series, Anh Do treats his readers to a Christmas mystery complete with a Claus family drama and a lesson on judging people by their appearances. For those who haven't read the rest of the series (this reads fine as a stand-alone by the way, providing a brief but fabulous recap chapter) Pow Pow Pig and his mates (Chow Chow Chicken, Barry the Goat and Kung Fu Duck) are from the future and they are the only ones who can go back in time to save the world. In each book they are trying to get to the year 2030 in an effort to convince the rich animals to help the poor animals and avert the disastrous future, however, their time machine inevitably takes them to the wrong place and time.
In Snow Action they've landed at the North Pole in the year 2010. They can't do anything to save the world here but the time machine needs charging so they do a little exploring and discover a mystery that just has to be solved. Santa's sleigh and two of his reindeer have been stolen. Who could do such a thing and does this mean Christmas is ruined? Explosive and action-packed black and white illustrations by Peter Cheong take up most of every page and the action comes on thick and fast with plenty of dialogue and simple narration. There is a lovely and overt message about forgiveness and looking past appearances to see what really lies under the surface. The Pow Pow Pig series is a wholesome and fun series to put into the hands (or ears) of any young reader.
Themes: Forgiveness, Christmas, Time travel, Mysteries.