cover image Hansel and Gretel

Hansel and Gretel

James Marshall. Dial Books, $15.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8037-0827-3

Marshall's trademark wit and slyness mark every page of this effervescent interpretation. Never has there been a more horribly magnificent witch than his--an overstuffed, cackling harridan resplendent in scarlet costume, lipstick and rouge, her hair bedecked with incongruously delicate bows. She is matched, perhaps even surpassed, in girth by the woodcutter's bad-tempered wife, whose piggish eyes, ferocious countenance and caustic barbs will prompt delicious shivers. The children triumph over both in high style, proving themselves worthy successors to the fairytale characters who have previously found new life in Marshall's hands. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)