Perfect Picture Book Friday – Rufus Blasts Off

Tra la!  It’s Friday!

There are just some words that make you feel good, aren’t there?  You know, like cupcake and cottage, raindrop and starlight, bakery and bookstore…and Friday! 🙂

I’ve got big plans for a fancy dinner – pizza with my favorite 4 and 6 year old – tiara NOT optional 🙂 – and a library visit for Big Truck Day.  A pretty hard-to-beat weekend, if you ask me! 🙂  I could have gone to the Garlic Festival… but somehow garlic ice cream sounds less appealing to me than chocolate anything.

However, that reminds me that we did have a conversation at Book Club this week about all the local festivals which include the Garlic Festival, and of course the upcoming NYS Sheep and Wool Festival (where Iza Trapani, Nancy Furstinger, Nancy Shaw, and I will all be so I hope you’ll all come visit us and get signed books for Christmas presents 🙂 ), but did you know we also have a Pickle Festival and a UFO Festival?  Seriously!  I am not making that up!

Anyway,  (watch how I pull this off! 🙂 ) speaking of UFOs, let’s have a look at today’s Perfect Picture Book which is about a pig in space: RUFUS BLASTS OFF! 🙂  (It took me years of practice, my friends, but it all paid off in the end.  My tiara says “Segue Queen” on it 🙂 )


Title: Rufus Blasts Off

Written By: Kim T. Griswell

Illustrated By: Valeri Gorbachev

Sterling Children’s Books, September 12 2017, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 3-5

Themes/Topics: pursuing your dreams, space, perseverance, love of reading

Opening: “Rufus Leroy Williams III had a pirate’s chest filled with books.
He loved every one.
And he read each book again anf again…and again.
One day, Captain Wibblyshins wanted a new story.
‘Arrrh!” said Rufus’s pirate mates.  “A new story!’

Brief Synopsis: In this third adventure of Rufus the pig, he has already been to school and sailed the seven seas with pirates.  Now, fascinated by Mars, he wants to go to space!  But Commander Luna says, “No pigs in space!”  What’s a pig to do?  He’ll just have to show up over and over, ready for blast off, until Commander Luna finally realizes he has the right stuff!

Links To Resources: make constellations out of pretzel sticks and mini marshmallows; Pie Plate Solar System Game; Glow-In-The-Dark Star Mobile; Moon Dust Writing Tray (for practicing letters)

rufus int

text copyright Kim T. Griswell 2017, illustration copyright Valeri Gorbachev 2017

Why I Like This Book:  It’s hard not to love a pig on a pirate ship.  Especially one who is so devoted to his story-loving pirate audience that he’s ready to blast off into space just to get them a new story (and if he gets to explore Mars while he’s at it, so much the better!)  Rufus is a delightfully determined little soul, never daunted by the repeated refusals of Commander Luna to join the crew.  He just keeps coming back…and coming back…and coming back until she realizes that they really can’t go to Mars without him (though I won’t tell you why – you’ll have to read and find out 🙂 )  Rufus is charming, and the art makes him so cute that he’s irresistible 🙂

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do 🙂

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out 🙂 ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! 🙂

27 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – Rufus Blasts Off

  1. Patricia Tilton says:

    This sounds like a fun story for kids. Hope Rufus doesn’t end up as dinner.

    Hope you had a terrific time last weekend and continue to have fun visiting festivals. I’m not surprised you have a UFO festival as you live in a more remote area of the NE where so many sightings have been made. The wool festival sounds fun!

  2. viviankirkfield says:

    Oh my gosh…pigs and pirates and space travel…what could be a better combination!
    Love this book, Susanna…I think it’s a fun book for kids and a great mentor text to get writers brainstorming of how to mash up elements that kids love.

  3. Rene` Diane Aube says:

    I can hardly wait to jump onto my library’s webpage and reserve Rufus’ story! *If they’ll let me since I’m a bit indebted to them right now…cough, cough* But don’t worry, I’ll fess up, pay up, and get a hold of this adorable sounding picture book!

    Thanks for bringing this to our attention 🙂 Happy Friday!

  4. Jilanne Hoffmann says:

    Pigs in Spaaaaaaaaaace!!!! and pirates! Who won’t want to read this book? Great choice, Susanna!

    We’ve got the “Hoes Down Harvest Festival” coming up near Davis, about an hour and a half away. Some of the best local farms dishing out great stuff. Hundreds of pumpkins carved. Fabulous time! I love fall!

  5. Sue Heavenrich says:

    We’ve got an Apple Festival one town over, and our Annual Fall Festival here – all happening next weekend! Susanna – I love your take on pigs in space. It looks fun! Especially the whole what-so-you-mean-pigs-don’t-belong-in-space. Seriously, if they can send monkeys, dogs, and cats into space I think there’s definitely a place for Pirate pigs.

  6. ingridboydston says:

    We have a pigs and fig festival out here on the West Coast…so why not pigs in space? Looks like another fun title to add to my classroom library! Pigs, space and pirates…it sounds like it could have been written on a dare as in “Betcha can’t…” Glad she did! :)!

  7. Keila Dawson says:

    I love garlic. Keeps the vampires away you know! And I must read this book. We have an annual Flying Pig race here in Cincinnati. This is Porkopolis and there are pig statues all over the city! If the author ever visited, I could see turning some into pirates for the day. Sounds like a fun book. On my list. Thanks1

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