Kirkus Reviews QR Code


From the A Masked Fairy Tale series

by Ellie Jenkins ; illustrated by Ellie Jenkins

Pub Date: March 1st, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-61067-610-6
Publisher: Kane Miller

This reworked version of the classic tale keeps everyone uneaten and alive.

Designed for playacting, the edition comes with two punch-out partial masks on the oversized jacket flaps—one a wolf face with eyeholes, the other a red hood with a fringe of straight, light brown hair. Here the story follows its customary course, except that the wolf gives both Little Red Riding Hood and her grandma enough advance warning that both have time to jump out a window. The wolf then escapes into the woods when the two prospective victims enlist a “cheerful lumberjack” to join them in a loud collective “BOO!” In Jenkins’ equally bland illustrations, the wolf is plainly a child in a body costume, and seeing him asleep in Grandma’s bed, Little Red comments “Awww, the little wolfie looks SO CUTE!” All the characters, including the little child in the wolf costume, are white. Likewise, in the co-published Goldilocks and the Three Bears, the hairy homeowners are depicted as young white people in animal suits (though Papa Bear’s fur is darker brown than Mama Bear’s, Baby’s, and the single bear mask provided…read into that what you will), and Goldilocks becomes a “snoop” because there are “no toys, no TV shows, and NO VIDEO GAMES in the forest.”

With about the same amount of effort children can make their own masks from scratch—and act out less-superficial renditions of the stories too.

(Novelty/folk tale. 6-8)