cover image David Roberts’ Delightfully Different Fairy Tales

David Roberts’ Delightfully Different Fairy Tales

Lynn Roberts-Maloney, illus. by David Roberts. Pavilion Children’s, $19.95 (90p) ISBN 978-1-84365-475-9

Illustrator Roberts collaborates with his sister, Roberts-Maloney, on a trio of traditional fairy tales transposed to 20th-century settings: Cinderella is a 1920s waif with a copy of Vogue tucked in her apron pocket, Rapunzel pines for a local rock star in a 1970s tower block of apartments, and Sleeping Beauty pricks her finger on a record player needle in the 1950s and wakes up 1,000 years in the future. Illustration spreads are chock-full of period-specific details—ape-hanger bicycles, record players, and flapper frocks—and visual gags, such as the greenish countenance of a hungover stepsister after Cinderella’s ball, and the stitched-together towels that encompass Rapunzel’s just-washed locks. Roberts-Maloney’s tales evolve from a meek, sweet Cinderella story that is essentially unchanged except for its setting, to a pale Sleeping Beauty woken by a heroic brown-skinned girl named Zoe. Instead of happily ever after, “they stepped out together into the bright morning sunshine.” Ages 3–6. [em](Oct.) [/em]