cover image Endlessly Ever After

Endlessly Ever After

Laurel Snyder, illus. by Dan Santat. Chronicle, $18.99 (92p) ISBN 978-1-4521-4482-5

Invoking myriad fairy tale scenarios throughout a cascading choose-one’s-path format, Snyder (the Charlie and Mouse series) builds a fairy story with logic gates. A tan-skinned child named Rosie stars as this second-person telling’s avatar, starting out as Little Red Riding Hood before being given the opportunity to encounter characters including Hansel and Gretel, the Goose that Laid the Golden Egg, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, and more. Snappy rhyming verse queries the protagonist after each step (“Now what, Rosie? Are you really going to kiss some strange sleeping woman in a frozen castle covered with roses?”), then gives readers variations from which to choose (“Yes, life is an adventure” vs. “Of course not. Kissing’s for teenagers”). Santat (The Aquanaut) romps lushly through this fairy tale universe, giving the folklore mainstays—some comic, some sinister, and predominantly pale-skinned—an exaggerated, kinetic quality. (Rosie, understandably, spends a lot of the time looking perplexed about what to do next.) Readers accustomed to video game–style endings won’t be bothered by Rosie’s many demises; turning the page resumes the action and leads to more choices, and employing frenetic action right through to the end—er, ends. Ages 5–8. Author’s agent: Tina Dubois, ICM Partners. Illustrator’s agent: Jodi Reamer, Writers House. (Apr.)