(2) K-3 Illustrated by Janet Stevens. Little Good Wolf is menace-free: well-mannered, tidy, and hygienic. This frustrates Papa and Mama Wolf, who send him on the Big Bad Bus to the Big Bad School, run by (in a clever play on words) Prince A. Bull and with teacher Wicked Stepmother. In a series of lessons ranging from Basic Badness to Bad Behavior, Little Good Wolf's inherently kind tendencies dominate. He convinces Giant to play baseball instead of whomping him with a club, and he subverts the Bad Manners lesson by teaching Troll how to eat politely. Expelled, the wolf wanders the forest but eventually finds his way home to grateful parents who have missed their son and changed their ways. (Papa Wolf's desperate attempts to impress his son by combing his teeth will elicit laughs.) Both Stevens and Crummel have fun putting a new spin on traditional characters in this fractured fairy tale. In full-bleed spreads, Stevens animates trolls, dragons, and more with much detail and humor, and three vertical spreads emphasize not only the imposing staff at the Big Bad School but also the abiding love Little Good Wolf's parents have for him. The last page subtly reminds readers that happiness comes from being "different," "interesting," and true to oneself. And it features a visual joke (involving a red apple seen earlier in the story) that wraps up this satisfying tale with a wicked wink.


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