Who's at the Door?

Jonathan Allen, Author Tambourine Books $11.95 (1p) ISBN 978-0-688-12257-7
This fairy-tale spinoff might cause the misunderstood wolf of Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith's The True Story of the Three Little Pigs to huff and puff in chagrin, but nearly everyone else will savor the wit in Allen's latest creation, which is as imaginatively produced as it is told. Here, a trio of unflappable pigs sharing a house in the woods answer the door at the behest of a persistent caller. Readers, too, will open the door: two-thirds as wide as the book's pages, it sits in the centers of most spreads, to be turned to reveal the visitor on the threshold, the big bad wolf in a series of disguises. The verso side of the door contains balloon dialogues to convey the interaction between wolf and pigs: ``I'm sorry but I've locked myself out of my house. Can I come in and use your phone?'' asks the wolf, outfitted in high heels, harlequin glasses, an outdated bonnet and flowered dress. The pigs--nobody's fools--not only dispatch the costumed wolf but devise a scheme to discourage him once and for all. The split-page device guarantees a lively pace, while Allen's puckish, cartoon-like pictures heighten the humor still further. Be sure to note the devastatingly droll piggy and wolf endpapers. Ages 3-up. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 03/29/1993
Release date: 04/01/1993
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