cover image The Goldilocks Variations: A Pop-up Book

The Goldilocks Variations: A Pop-up Book

Allan Ahlberg, illus. by Jessica Ahlberg. Candlewick, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-7636-6268-4

Retellings of Goldilocks are many, and this father-daughter team increases the tally by seven in this well-designed and very funny offering. Allan Ahlberg opens with a concise traditional version of the story before diving into increasingly chaotic alternate takes: in "Goldilocks and the 33 Bears," the girl's getaway is thwarted when she runs into dawdling teenage bears outside; an alien encounter, "Goldilocks and the Bliim," has a vocabulary all its own ("Who's been dodderling my spootz?"); and a parody of a children's theater production features audience interaction and a great many dance numbers. Interactive elements are cleverly integrated, and Jessica Ahlberg's prim watercolor cartoons and an overall elegant layout contrast delightfully with the stories' many comedic moments. Ages 5%E2%80%93up. (Oct.)