Since de Paola is more a pattern-maker, a creator of static tableaux, than a narrative illustrator, a wordless de Paola picture-tale is not exactly a grabber; nor is this a tale with strongly-delineated, page-turning action in itself. As a little morality play, indeed, it might have benefited from a few well-chosen words. The story: a hunter goes to the woods, and can't find the animals (because they're mostly lined up behind him). Come evening, he falls asleep; the animals take his gun and also lop off branches wholesale; on awakening, he's distraught and lost (without the flap-copy explanation, some might not comprehend this); but the animals take pity on him and lead him home--whereupon he breaks his gun in gratitude and takes the animals as friends. Pleasant as the pictures are one by one (patterned, we're told, on Hungarian folk art), they lack emotion--as well as action--and so, largely, does the sequence.