cover image Mother Goose and Friends

Mother Goose and Friends

, . . Little, Brown, $16.99 (64pp) ISBN 978-0-316-77718-6

As fans of Sanderson's painterly fairy tale retellings might expect, her Mother Goose collection is an invitation to an old-fashioned world of enchantment. Her oil paintings teem with Victorian elves and fairies as well as human beings; they present gardens full of wild flowers, pumpkin houses, mice in waistcoats, tables set for tea, and a plump muffin man, and each time the human details merge attractively with the imaginary scenery. Sanderson includes almost all of the most familiar Mother Goose rhymes and adds some less well-known verses as well. The images are generally idyllic, but Sanderson sometimes includes unexpected action. King Cole in his ermine-trimmed robe and short puffy breeches blows bubbles from a pipe as three pink pigs in livery fiddle beside him. For the brief “Ride a Cock Horse,” Sanderson conjures an elaborate double-page spread of a girl with a hobby horse who stands shyly with her mother behind a twisted, ancient tree. They watch as a parade of winged elves and fairies in flower hats accompany a Guinevere-like lady, seated on a white horse. Luminous and elegant. Ages 3-6. (Mar.)