In the manner of other recent retellings (e.g., Verdy's Of Swans, Sugarplums, and Satin Slippers, 1991), a detailed interpretation of events seen in the dance. Of particular interest here is Werner's introduction, outlining the history of Stravinsky's ballet and linking Petrouchka to Punch and even to Pagliacci. The story itself is gracefully told, but though it hints at the poignant drama of the dance, it remains more a series of scenes described than a tale that comes to life on its own. Collier, an award-winning illustrator who has rarely worked for children, issues a series of beautifully composed paintings; his characters' stances and expressions skillfully capture the feeling conveyed by the dance, while his haunting jacket portrait of the tragic puppet clown is lovely. Worthwhile, especially where there is interest in theater and dance.