cover image The Three Bears: An Alphabet Book

The Three Bears: An Alphabet Book

Grace Maccarone, illus. by Hollie Hibbert. Albert Whitman, $16.99 (48p) ISBN 978-0-8075-7823-0

The story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears gets an abecedarian twist, courtesy of Maccarone and Hibbert. Goldilocks, who has bronzed skin and wavy blonde hair, approaches the bears’ home when they are away: “H is for house. Goldilocks saw the bears’ happy house in the forest. I is for inside, where Goldilocks went.” Ample alliteration helps underscore the alphabet concept, but Hibbert’s digital illustrations are oddly soft-edged and fuzzy; it’s almost like watching a 3D movie without the glasses—slightly dizzying. Despite the novel structure of this retelling, the prose has a flatness that drains the story of any real excitement, and Goldilocks’s interactions with the bears provide no real surprises. Ages 4–7. (Mar.)