4 out of 4 stars
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Sometimes a person just has to laugh to keep from crying. But four years is a long time to keep up such fake mirth. I, therefore, admire people who can turn lengthy sorrow on its ear and create something humorous that will last a lot longer. The author using the moniker A. Hamm, then, has my undying admiration for penning Pmurt the Pig: The Book That Brought Down A Presidency.
Ostensibly a satire, this hilarious "children's book...also a children's book for adults" briefly tells the story of Pmurt's time as "leader" of Merica Farm, honing in on the lowlights - there were no highlights - of the caricature's time in office.
As a non-Pmurt supporter, I found this short book quite riotous and dead-on, even though it was supposed to be parody. I was able to hear the muse's voice every time Pmurt spoke, and much of the wording was 100% bona fide. For instance, I could totally hear the nasally voice when I read, "This stuff is unbelievable! You have to try it." I could also picture him looking into the "camera" when he was yelling at the narrator for telling things as they really were.
Other real life players were also portrayed, including the FOP (Fat Olde Pigs) as a whole, Smelly Ann Liesway, Sarah Fullabull-Panders, and Ham Nitty. Nitup ("rhymes with 'poop'") also received a mention as the leader of the wolves. Representing the other side were Barry, a smooth black stallion, and Jim Acowsta, a very strong and smart bull. Robert Buller played a role as well, but I would have preferred if he'd been a mule named Robert Mule'r. What I found most hilarious were the foxes that disseminated Pmurt's lies while claiming that the cows' words where "Fake Moos." I thought this latter inclusion really drove home the madness of the real events and claims that inspired this work.
Since this was a children's book, the tome was filled with colorful pictures, which made me giggle even more. Seeing the swine sporting his bad wig while munching on some "delicious" bacon was almost more than I could handle, and I ended up reading from the floor, lest I fall off the couch with laughter. The other barnyard animals were also nicely drawn, so I spent a lot of time poring over the illustrations, looking at all the details. The end of the book includes several morals from the story as well as critical thinking questions, which I believe is a nice touch for the younger readers too.
Sadly, this book was published in 2020, so events from the last election and beyond were not included, and I think they would have been the perfect fodder for the end of the spoof. As it was, I really liked how it diverged from reality and ended. Still, a sequel including the exploits of the last six months would be much welcomed.
As noted earlier, this tale was written by "A. Hamm," and the author does confirm, in About the Author, that it is a reference to Alexander Hamilton, one of the USA's founding fathers and the lead character in the musical titled after his name. As a fan of that play, I suspected so when I saw the name and when I read "On the Farm Where It Happened" on the back of the book since one of the songs in the show is titled "The Room Where It Happened." Since Hamilton was known for repeatedly criticizing and picking apart his rivals in print, the writer thought he would be the perfect narrator. The fact that ham and bacon come from the same noted animal made it even funnier. If he wasn’t so sad a character, one could add in a third wink of Pmurt being “a ham.”
Pmurt the Pig was not without its negatives, however, like Pmurt was not without his. Several of the sentences in the speech bubbles had capitalization mistakes and didn't end with proper punctuation; since other sentences in speech bubbles did end with punctuation, it made the writing slightly inconsistent. I did overlook the sentences with bad syntax, though, as I felt they were purposeful and authentic. Even though typographical issues in a children's book are a big no-no, there were not enough to mark it down, so I'm thrilled to rate this yarn 4 out of 4 stars. Although the author and myself have noted it as a children's book, I'd recommend it for young people closer to their teens. Non-Pmurt supporters may also like to spend an hour or so with this read, as may fans of political satire and parody in general. Interestingly, the tale includes no violence or sexual situations - though Pmurt does speak of grabbing sows by their tails - so I applaud the author in cleaning those parts up.
- Pmurt, Pmurt the PigFAKE MOOS!!! FAKE MOOS!!! Don’t listen to this mad cow!
Pmurt the Pig
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