cover image Max and Ruby's Midas: Another Greek Myth

Max and Ruby's Midas: Another Greek Myth

Rosemary Wells. Dial Books, $12.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8037-1782-4

""I am going to read you a bedtime story about someone whose sweet tooth got out of control,"" announces authoritative Ruby after she catches Max, her puckish brother, hiding cupcakes in his pajamas. Max (and any child) will effortlessly absorb-if not necessarily learn from-the Midas legend presented here in Wells's (Max and Ruby's First Greek Myth/Pandora's Box) droll narrative and ink-and-watercolor art. Uncannily resembling Max, Midas is a gluttonous young bunny who hates fruits and vegetables. One morning, he ""laser-beams his eyes"" to turn a serving of melon topped with prune whip into a hot-fudge sundae. The magic works, but unfortunately his mother's hand is in the path of his beam, and she turns into a cherry float. Midas's father and big sister, respectively, suffer similar fates at lunch and at snacktime. This revisionist Midas learns his lesson, unlike the still-ravenous Max, who pulls a cupcake out of his pajamas as Ruby leaves his room-a winsome crowning touch, typical of the irrepressible Max and his clever creator. And the endpaper paintings of classical greco-bunny statues should not be missed. Ages 4-8. (May)