cover image The Jolly Postman

The Jolly Postman

Allan Ahlberg, Janet Ahlberg. Heinemann Educational Books, $9.94 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-434-92515-5

This British import is great fun, sure to entertain children and parents alike. The Jolly Postman goes from home to home in a fairy-tale kingdom, delivering letters to such familiar addresses as ""Mr. and Mrs. Bear, Three Bears Cottage, The Woods.'' Every other page is an actual envelope, with a letter tucked inside. The letter to the three bears, for instance, is from Goldilocks, who apologizes for the trouble she's caused and invites Baby Bear to her birthday party. Some authors would stop with this cute concept, but the Ahlbergs have given this book their all. The story of the postman's travels is told in charming verse; the pictures are delightful, full of clever detail; and the results are frequently hilarious. (The wicked witch of ``Hansel and Gretel'' fame, for instance, receives a circular from Hobgoblin Supplies Ltd. which advertises such appealing products as Little Boy Pie Mix.) A real treat at a good price. (4-8)