By: Norman Whaler
Illustrated by: Mohammad Shayan
Publisher: Beneath Another Sky Books
Publication Date: February 2019
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Review Date: February 8, 2020
Oink is a young pig who has the adventure “spark” within him that is equaled only by the one inside Indiana Jones. His buddy, Gobble, is a turkey who really believes caution is a virtue. She’s hysterical, actually, and loves rolling her eyes at Oink when he tends to go too far out there with his creative imagination. This spark-filled go-getter and this truly “grounded” turkey make great friends, as they keep their days rolling by filled with humor that you wouldn’t normally see on a regular farm. Or, perhaps you would, if you paid more attention to the “gobble/oink” conversations animals are having.
In this particular adventure, however, a duo come upon the farm that many people know as the “Men in Black.” In fact, this duo was so funny in the movies, and so memorable, that you kind of hear the happy theme song in your mind as you open this book and begin to read.
On this morning in the town of Little Bottom, Oink has discovered that he can shoot water out of his nose. Although Gobble smiles and thinks the skill is funny, she does understand why some of the animals on the farm think Oink is “a few fries short of a Happy Meal.” Anyway, the night before there were lights high up in the sky over Little Bottom, and Oink – even though Gobble told him what he saw was a plane – believes that the lights were an alien spaceship. His imagination grows even more when he stares out the slats of the fence and sees two men dressed in dark suits, wearing cool sunglasses, and donning slicked-back hair speaking to Farmerman. Yes, Oink truly believes that the Men in Black have arrived because of last night’s strange, otherworldy occurrence.
As Oink and Gobble follow the men around the farm, they try to remain inconspicuous as the strange guys use a gadget with lights, and then pick up samples of the farm’s dirt and place it into jars. Gobble finally convinces Oink that there’s nothing to worry about, but when they turn back towards the farm...a surprise comes about that only readers of the book are allowed to enjoy.
Yes, this is one of those series that is beyond fun. Not only is there a twist, but the main characters are a remarkable team that young and old alike will love to form a friendship with. The author also has placed adorable farm/animal jokes in the back of the book to share.
Although the age range for the book is stated to be 4-7 years, as a grandmother of two (ages 2 and a very wise 3 who, I believe, may be the president of her own country one day), I have to say that we all enjoyed this book a lot. The kids were interested in Oink and Gobble and going on adventures with them on their fantastic farm. It is not a surprise this is an award-winning series; these books are colorful, memorable, and one of those rare finds that, like the favorite stuffed animal they have to sleep with every night, the kids will ask Grandma for again and again.
Quill Says: This book is a stand-out among the other great books in this series. Once you enjoy them, grandmothers and grandchildren everywhere will unite for Oink and Gobble!
For more information on Oink and Gobble and the Men in Black, please visit the author's website at: www.NormanWhaler.com