cover image Rosalie and Truffle: A Story of Love; Truffle and Rosalie: A Story of Luck

Rosalie and Truffle: A Story of Love; Truffle and Rosalie: A Story of Luck

Katja Reider, , illus. by Jutta Bücker. . Abrams/Image, $9.95 (64pp) ISBN 978-0-8109-5984-2

This small-format, paper-over-board volume presents the back-to-back, flip-over tales of two young pigs who spend their time dreaming—Rosalie of love, Truffle of being lucky. Rosalie's parents chastise her for failing to find something "better" to do ("You could learn French or practice ballet or play a musical instrument...") while Truffle's parents similarly suggest alternative pastimes. When the two dreamers meet under an apple tree, friends of each scoff at the idea that Rosalie and Truffle have fallen in love at first sight and encourage them to search further ("There's a whole world of pigs out there") and to undergo makeovers. Rosalie jumps into a rigorous fitness routine and acquires a new hairstyle and outfit, while Truffle also takes part in a transformation until, one of his pals proudly announces, there is "Not a trace of the old Truffle!" They both finally realize that each wants the other "the way I was!" and blissfully reunite under the apple tree. A wordless center spread depicting their embrace (with a bite out of an apple) serves as the climax for both tales. The mirroring of the tales necessitates some repetition, but the story's worthwhile message (which may be most resonant with readers beyond the picture-book crowd) about the rewards of remaining true to oneself and following one's heart provides ample compensation. Bücker's spare, blithe artwork imbues each love-struck pig with endearing and comical expressions. A sweet Valentine's Day confection. Ages 4-8. (Feb.)