Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Treasury of Jillian Jiggs by Phoebe Gilman

A Treasury of Jillian Jiggs (Hardcover)A Treasury of Jillian Jiggs by Phoebe Gilman is a collection of all five of Gilman's books about the Jillian Jiggs character.  It includes Jillian Jiggs, The Wonderful Pigs of Jillian Jiggs ,  Jillian Jiggs to the Rescue, Jillian Jigg's and the Secret Surprise, and Jillian Jiggs and the Great Big Snow.  Also included is background information on each of the books and clues of things hidden in the books.  It would make a great addition to any book shelf.

Jillian Jiggs by Phoebe Gilman was a favorite of my first three children, who are now young adults.  We read the book often but our copy of the book disappeared and I hadn't read it to Anna, our little surprise that arrived in our home when our first three were teenagers. I was thrilled to come across it while checking the shelves of our local library.  I hardly needed to read the words because I still remembered them from all the times I had read them years before.   The book starts with "Jillian, Jillian, Jillian Jiggs!  It looks like your room has been lived in by pigs!"  Like many children, Jillian Jiggs has trouble keeping her room tidy because she's too busy being creative.  The repeated phrases in the story make it so much fun!

I also remember reading The Wonderful Pigs of Jillian Jiggs to my first three children.  In this story Jillian makes herself a little stuffed pig, and then another, and then another, and before long her room is over taken by her stuffed pigs.  At the back of the book are instructions to make your own stuffed pig just like Jillian's.

The other three Jillian books I hadn't read until this past year when I found a copy of A Treasury of Jillian Jiggs in our local library.  I'm so glad we discovered it.

Jillian Jiggs to the Rescue is a cute story where Jillian comes to the rescue of Rebecca, her little sister, when Rebecca has a scary dream about a monster.  The book ends with a really cute surprise.

I didn't enjoy Jillian Jigg's and the Secret Surprise as much as the others, but it was okay.  It is Rebecca's birthday and Jillian doesn't have money to buy her a gift, so she decides to put on a play for Rebecca, but she has to keep changing her plans.  It is a cute story just not as catchy as the others.  In the back of the book is the script for the play Jillian did.  Phoebe Gilman's website also has a page with ideas on what to do to put the play on yourself

Jillian Jiggs and the Great Big Snow is almost as good as the first three.  Jillian and her friends have loads of fun playing in the snow, but Jillian keeps losing something - her hat, her mittens, her scarf.  She decides to replace her lost hat with a special hat from her dress up box and it results in some very creative snow creations.

Along with writing the stories Phoebe Gilman also did the illustrations.  Her pictures are fun and colourful but they are made even more special because of something neat Phoebe Gilman did. In each new book that she wrote, she included some kind of pictorial reference to all her previous books.  It is fun to look for those in the books.

If you click on the first four individual book titles above you will be brought to a page on Phoebe Gilman's website with information about the book and a list of things to look for in the illustrations.  I'm assuming she didn't get a chance to create such a page for the last book as it was the last Jillian Jiggs book she wrote before she died.

The Jillian Jiggs books are not the only books that Phoebe Gilman wrote, but they are our favorite ones and I love the fact that they are all together in A Treasury of Jillian Jiggs by Phoebe Gilman.

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