Socrates, the compulsively philosophical wolf, has two problems: his hungry wife, Xantippe, who has a yen for little pig, and his own in. tense curiosity that will not let him go hunting until he has figured out exactly how three little pigs can be arranged within five possible houses. Curiosity wins; it takes all night to draw diagrams of 5,745 houses (plus trees, chairs, and pigs) to find 35 unique pig clusters. When morning comes, friendship with the pigs seems like a better idea than a pork dinner. Anno's skillfully decorative illustrations and the humorous text by a mathematician make this immersion into the world of combinations, permutations, factorials, and sets comprehensible, even entertaining. But only the rare, scholarly child will be apt to stay with the explication to the end. For the most patient (or adults), Mori has appended a further explanation.