"Yummy: Eight Favorite Fairy Tales"
By Lucy Cousins
Candlewick, $18.99, ages 4-8
Lucy Cousins' presentations of 8 familiar fairy tales are "yummy," because food and eating, necessary and communal activities, are central, whether it's in the familiar "Little Red Riding Hood" or the less-known "The Enormous Turnip," where the turnip becomes "an enormous feast" for the family, pets and even the household mouse. The wolf eats Little Red and her grandmother, but after they are rescued by a passing hunter, all three sit down to enjoy the food in the basket Little Red had been carrying. It's also yummy because even the ferocious characters-- the usual bad lot of wolves and trolls-- are so cheerily depicted in the style familiar to children from Cousins' "Maisy" books that they lack the creepy edges of traditional tales for older readers. The various animals all have some part of their costume in brightly colored, spotted, striped or flowered clothing, a sort of Marimekko nation. "The Bremen Town Musicians" might be especially resonant to children because initially the animals each feel "Nobody loves me," a not unfamiliar playground sentiment. Parents who have been wondering about fairy tales for their young children might take a look.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun