Rating: 4 stars
In the bestselling tradition of Marley and Me, a funny, heartwarming and inspiring true story about how one little pig changed her owners’ lives forever.
When an old friend contacted Steve Jenkins out of the blue and begged him to take in a ‘micro’ piglet, he couldn’t say no. Though he knew his partner wouldn’t be thrilled about him taking in yet another stray, the idea of having a cute little pig to care for was simply irresistible. Little did he know, that decision would turn his and Derek’s lives upside down.
It turned out that as adorable as she was, there was nothing ‘micro’ about Esther, and as she grew and grew, Steve and Derek realised that they had actually signed on to raise a full-sized commercial pig. Within three years, dainty little Esther grew to a whopping 600 pounds (270 kilograms). After a rollercoaster ride of growing pains and a lot of pig-sized dramas, it became clear that Esther needed more space, so Steve and Derek made another life-changing decision: they bought a farm and opened the Happily Ever Esther Farm Sanctuary, where they could care for Esther and offer refuge to other animals in need.
Inspired by their adventures with their not so little pig, Steve and Derek have become two of the world’s best known and most successful animal rights activists, alongside the magnificent Esther, who has hundreds of thousands of fans around the world. Best of all, Esther the Wonder Pig shows how families really do come in all shapes and sizes.
A few months or so ago my boyfriend and I had a conversation, I can’t even remember what it was about or how we came to the topic of pigs, but I remembered seeing a story about two men who adopted a pig and we somehow landed on the facebook page of Esther the Wonder Pig. It quickly became one of my favourite facebook pages to follow and every day I am looking forward to seeing Esther her adorable pictures show up on my timeline. She is so adorable and has so much personality and it’s fun to see the pictures and videos of her and her family.
Eventually I heard about the book and my boyfriend bought a copy for me. This book is about Steve and Derek their journey and how their lives changes from the moment they met Esther. I really enjoyed reading this book. I don’t read a lot of non-fiction books, but I am glad I read this one. Esther the Wonderpig is a heartwarming and uplifting story that shows the power of kindness and how a pig can change lives. It’s inspiring to read about how Esther changed their lives and how many hearts she touched, simply by existing and by having given a chance to live by Steve and Derek.
There are some difficult times they go through, some sad and more happy scenes. Chapters where Esther makes a mess of the house or something without intending too ofcourse and those type of stories always remind me of the pet rats we used to have and how sometimes they could cause trouble without intending to, like peeing on unfortunate places. Which Esther does as well, but Esther is a pig and a lot larger than most pets. It’s interesting to read about how they deal with now having Esther in the house and how they have to adjust things, like placing things out of reach and taping things shut because Esther would be able to open them else.
The book tells how they got Esther, but also their thought processes behind some things, the struggles they went through and how they eventually got the Happily Ever Esther farm. The book is humorously written, even though there are some sad scenes the overall tone is humorous and uplifting. There were some moments where I laughed out loud or had to stop reading and read a part aloud to my boyfriend.
I think it’s awesome how these two decided to take in a pig and fell in love with her and how she in turn changed their lives. It’s quite impressive to see what an impact Esther has had on their lives. There are some mentions of how they became vegan and in the end of the book are some vegan recipes, but the tone is never preachy. It just tells their story and their experience. In the middle of the book are a few pages with pictures from Esther, which were fun to see. And every chapter starts with a small adorable pig under the chapter heading.
I just had wished this book would’ve been even longer, I would’ve liked to read more about their daily lives, more funny stories and stories that gave us a feel for Esther their personality. But this book is quite linear and it tells the story of how they got Esther, some big hurdles they had to overcome, how the facebook page started, the fundraiser, how their lives changed till the moment they arrived at their new farm. I really enjoyed reading this story and I had a lot of fun reading the book. It was just as engaging as fiction books and I just wanted to keep reading. Even knowing how things would end it was still exciting to see it all play out. And I visualized how everything looked in my mind, just as I would do with fiction books.
To summarize: Esther the Wonder Pig is a great heartwarming and uplifting story. It makes you believe in the power of kindness and shows how two people their lives changed because of the addition of a pet pig named Esther. I really enjoyed reading this book! It was humorously written and also had some scenes where I laughed out loud. Also some parts that were a bit sad or showed some trouble they had to go through, but overall it’s a very uplifting book. There are some vegan recipes included at the back of the book and some pictures of Esther and her family in the middle. I just had wished it was even longer and showed even more of Esther and their daily lives. But that’s just because I enjoyed reading this book so much! I would recommend this book to animal lovers or anyone who enjoys a good heartwarming story that makes you believe in the power of kindness!