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Saturday, August 13, 2011

WOLF WON'T BITE! Written and illustrated by Emily Gravett. Macmillan, 2011. $19.99 ages 3 and up

"I can stand him on a stool!
I can dress him in a bow...
I can ride him like a horse but

If you are one of those people who always sympathized with the three little pigs in their tale of constant haranguing by the big bad wolf, you are going to love their comeuppance in Emily Gravett's new book.

Take a look at the cover, front and back, to see who has the upper hand as the adventure begins. The endpapers give clues to his capture while the title page has the nattily dressed piggies posting an invitation to their upcoming show. The pigs are dressed to the nines, while the wolf is looking a little woebegone, and definitely downtrodden. He has obviously been tidily tamed by his these three little porkers.

That is only the beginning for the poor guy...his clever captors get on with the show. There seems nothing he won't do for them. While they look sprightly in leotards, a ringmaster's jacket and a jeweled tutu, he allows himself to be harnessed, hoisted, even halved. Is there no end to the humiliation?

Kids love a 'twisted' ending, and they will not be disappointed here. Trademark Emily Gravett! We have come to expect the unexpected from her, and she never disappoints. This lively readaloud only adds to my admiration for her work. I can't wait to share it, and to hearing young readers take it up to read it on their own. It won't take them long, and will certainly add to their store of books that make reading a sheer delight and a worthwhile pursuit for them. Who wouldn't want to be able to read, when books like this one are ready at hand?

She's done it again. Emily Gravett's latest picture book is sure to be a hit, with young children requesting it over and over and over. Oh, and one more time!

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