Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2010-08-23
- Reviewer: Staff
Snappy dialogue drives this fairy tale parody about a hapless royal story writer who's lost his notes and a self-important king who--in the tradition of The Monster at the End of This Book and Do Not Open This Book!--tries to dissuade would-be readers: "If you turn one more page of this book I will throw you in the dungeon!" The writer scrambles to reconstruct his story (it's about a princess, a pea, and 15 mattresses), while the king tries to guess the title ("Was it The Princess and the Incredibly Handsome King?... Was it The Princess and the Amazingly Wise King?"). Fairy tale characters have walk-ons throughout ("Er... my, my, Your Majesty... What a big crown you have..." says a "thoroughly confused" wolf, dressed up like Red Riding Hood's grandmother). Allwright carries through the under-construction theme with pages laid out on graph paper and digital scraps that peel back to reveal additional story elements; she draws the characters with a friendly retro touch. Lewis handles her no-story story with sparkle, and children will enjoy the feeling of having avoided the king's wrath. Ages 3–7. (Sept.)