Can pigs fly? Well, if they had the technology and the know how, it’s a possibility. And when it becomes a dire necessity in the hogfolk world of Pigdom Plains, then it’s time to hit the books and figure it out.
In Pigdom Plains, noteworthy inventor Hercules Fatchops is trying to invent an aircraft that can stay airborne without the use of magic. But it is actually his daughter Lily Leanchops who is close to figuring out how a pig can stay in the air. And it has come at a crucial time. Warthog aircraft have been spotted, imbued with magic and stealing supplies from town to town without warning. Determined to protect her country, Lily travels in her experimental aircraft to the mysterious lands of the Warthogs to discover who is creating these aircraft and how powerful they are.
Writer Nick Abadzis and illustrator Jerel Dye have created an action packed, mysterious, and colorful fantasy world. The world of the hogfolk is very similar to our world; new innovations are thought of everyday, but people mistrust what they do not understand. Lily Leanchops is a spunky inventor with determination and an open mind. While her father is opposed to using even the slightest bit of magic in his inventions, Lily slowly realizes that combining spells with science is not necessarily a bad thing. The rest of the cast are unique and play their roles very well, whether it be the magical warthog leader or the hot headed former student turned villain. As the readers venture into the strange wilderness of the Warthogs, the religion of the hogfolk is explored, and they soon join the experienced and newly trained pilots in the cockpit. There is solid resolution in the end, but there are also a few clues that hint at a potential sequel.
Dye’s use of colors and his drawing style add action and drama to the story. There are many aerial flight scenes where pigs are dodging one another or traveling through tough terrain. These events are able to flow from one panel to the next without distracting the reader or causing confusion. Birds eye views of the landscapes are shown beautifully and with a lot of details. The colorful and bright Pigdom Plains are a stark contrast to the warthog’s red and gray rocky mountainous lands. The hogfolk themselves are anthropomorphic pigs wearing clothing similar to the fashion of the early twentieth century. They have features similar to a pig or a warthog (the nose, ears, three fingers on each hand, two upturned tusks protruding from the mouth), but their mannerisms and lifestyles are very human. It is a creative and colorful world with an abundance of piggy puns.
With its dynamic aerial scenes and magical moments, Pigs Might Fly will make a great addition to any children’s library. The writing and artwork combined create an interesting story that will grab any readers’ attention. Give this to children in 3rd to 6th grades who enjoy fantasy action comics like Amulet and Bone.
Pigs Might Fly
by Nick Abadzis
Art by Jerel Dye
First Second, 2017
Publisher Age Rating:7-12