Two invitations on the same day: shall it be the witty, sparkling charade of Uri Shulevitz or the sweet, slow pageantry of Adrienne Adams? In the first, the hero is a ""poor soldier, who had been wounded in battle and could no longer fight;"" he tries his luck because ""I surely would like to be king one day"" and takes as his prize the eldest daughter ""since I am no longer young."" In the second, the aspirant is a young cow-boy named Michael who ""was always called the Star Gazer because...he went along with his head in the air gaping at nothing;"" he is inspired by ""the beautiful eyes of the Princess Lina,"" and, of course, chooses her as his bride. (The latter version is a long elaboration of the basic plot with no source indicated; the former is a brief, pithy translation of Grimm.) Each is illustrated in an equally different spirit. The Shulevitz is a picture book, highly imaginative in drawing and design. The illustrations vary from small dry vignettes to full-page scenic effects with a flavor of Art Nouveau. The Adams is a story with pictures, and these are rather conventional and vapid, not up to the artist's best. It's a choice between opposites: our selection would be the Shulevitz for stronger text and distinctive design.