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ONCE UPON A TIME by Vivian French


by Vivian French & illustrated by John Prater

Pub Date: May 1st, 1993
ISBN: 0-56402-177-7
Publisher: Candlewick

``Not much to do. Not much to see,'' complains a bored child, sticking close to his own yard and oblivious to the familiar folklore in progress all around him: three bears chase Goldilocks, then mend their broken chair (much comic difficulty with the glue); Humpty Dumpty cavorts on a wall; the three pigs borrow Humpty's ladder to complete their roof; a giant looms in the distance and then marches into the foreground. The idea isn't unique, and some of the details are a bit off (the ``wolf'' looks more like a fox), but ``readers'' will enjoy spotting favorite characters, following them through successive spreads, and picking up on amusing variants (Red Riding Hood gets rid of the wolf by stamping on his toes). Prather's broad, deftly limned spreads are lively and expressive. After a first reading of the brief text, children will happily pore over the eventful illustrations alone. (Picture book. 3-8)