Red's Great Chase

Simone Lia, Author, Meredith Mundy Wasinger, Editor, Simone Lia, Illustrator Dutton Books $14.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-525-46213-2
It all starts when Red, a carrot-topped girl, tiptoes into the dark basement, represented by brightly hued, cheery toys silhouetted against a black background: ""You never know when a scary monster might jump out, she thought./ Just then, she saw one!"" The chase is on, as a big blue creature with yellow horns (who bears more of resemblance to a plush toy than a fearsome bogeyman) appears from the half-light to pursue Red over, under and through both real-life and fanciful landscapes. Red never loses her cool, though: she rides a zebra through the jungle with aplomb and even scales a skyscraper (the illustration is printed sideways to emphasize the height of her achievement). When her pursuer finally ""catches"" her, the monster turns out to be Mom in a costume--and now it's Red's turn to gleefully chase her. British author/artist Lia knows just how to pitch suspense for young audiences: as the excitement builds, her plucky heroine, caption-like text and na f-style illustrations will assure even youngest readers that Red is never really in peril. A giddy roller-coaster ride--with training wheels. Ages 3-7. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 04/03/2000
Release date: 04/01/2000
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