“Need is a weak word. Has nothing to do with what people get. Ain’t what you need that matters. It’s what you do.”
My 16th book for the summer (and a book that was actually on my school summer-reading list) was A Day No PIgs Would Die, by Robert Newton Peck. This is one of the books I named as a part of my own personal read-a-thon. The book is a bout a 12 year old boy named Robert Peck, the son of a butcher, in rural Vermont in the 1920s. He’s the youngest child in his family, the only one left at home, and the only boy to survive infancy. The story opens with Robert stumbling upon a neighbor’s cow in distress after running away from school. Robert helps the cow birth a calf and ends up getting quite injured in the process. The neighbor is grateful to Robert for his assistance with the birthing of her calf, and in return gives Robert a baby pig as a reward. The story follows Robert as he rambles through his boyhood with his pet pig, Pinky, at his side.
This is a coming of age story. Once again, the book is short, and too much synopsis would give it all way, but one thing that might be useful to note is that the book is not really about the pig. Pinky is important, but she is not the focus. This is my second time reading this book. I read it years ago in elementary or middle school (this is a middle-grades book), and now that I’m an adult, I see some things about the story that I missed. It’s not an amazing book, but it is a goo coming of age story with some good nuggets of wisdom sprinkled throughout.