Pamela Marsh

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Last Updated on May 5, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 184

Inside almost every American and quite a few Europeans there's a farm lad trying to get out. The young dream of a machine-free life and organic bread, their elders of traditional American values and home-cooked pie. Robert Peck is writing for them all [in "A Day No Pigs Would Die"]….

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In showing just how earthy farm life is and how stoic a farmer and his children must be Mr. Peck spares us nothing. Vivid animal mating scenes, butcherings, a cruel economy that forces a boy to help slaughter his beloved pet pig and his father to insist that he does—we get the lot, along with delightful rural scenes and picturesque turns of speech….

I found it sometimes sickening, often entrancing. But there were also too many times when I could feel the author digging me in the ribs, self-consciously demanding my tears or my laughter.

Pamela Marsh, "What's New and Popular on the Bookshelf: 'A Day No Pigs Would Die'," in The Christian Science Monitor (reprinted by permission from The Christian Science Monitor; © 1973 The Christian Science Publishing Society; all rights reserved), January 17, 1973, p. 11.

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