________________ CM . . . . Volume XX Number 38 . . . . May 30, 2014


Cinderella's Big Foot. (Tadpoles: Fairytale Twists).

Laura North. Illustrated by Martin Remphry.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2014.
32 pp., pbk., hc., pdf & html, $8.95 (pbk.) $20.76 (RLB.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-0448-5 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-0440-9 (RLB.), ISBN 978-1-4271-7560-1 (pdf), ISBN 978-1-4271-7552-6 (html).

Preschool-grade 3 / Ages 4-8.

Review by Roxy Garstad.

**** /4



One day, a gold invitation to the royal ball arrived.

"Cinderella, you will stay here and clean while we meet the prince!" laughed the evil stepsisters.

"I wish I could go the ball," sobbed Cinderella.

Cinderella's Big Foot is a witty retelling of the classic Cinderella story, part of the popular "Tadpoles: Fairytale Twists" series. The story contains just enough elements from the time-honoured version to be familiar to the preschooler, elements such as the scheming stepsisters, the ball at the prince's castle, and the nail-biting consequences of the clock striking midnight. This time, however, Cinderella does not present a dainty foot that will fit the glass slipper, nor is she as gentle and soft-spoken as Disney's Cinderella. Instead, the fairy godmother punishes Cinderella for her conceited and rude attitude, casting a spell that causes the unsightly growth of her foot. Cinderella promises to improve her behaviour if her fairy godmother agrees to shrink her foot so that it will fit into the glass slipper once again. The happy ending of the original tale is thus preserved.

internal art      The illustrations are engaging, dynamic, and colourful, often spanning both sides of the page. The illustrations of the characters convey a sense of action as they lean to and fro, with various expressions depicted on their faces. Especially notable and refreshing is the illustrator's portrayal of ethnically diverse characters. Readers will want to examine the pictures closely for amusing embellishments, such as a stepsister reading a magazine entitled, "Bossing Weekly".

      The book contains additional educational content that might be useful to readers. A more in-depth examination of the book is facilitated by a guide called "Notes for Adults," which contains suggestions for activities before, during, and after reading the book. Two puzzles which allow further participation by eager children are appropriate for advanced preschoolers or school-aged children. Older toddlers would also benefit from a reading of this book. With these enhancements, along with the engaging story and attractive illustrations, Cinderella's Big Foot becomes an essential purchase for elementary school and public libraries.

Highly Recommended.

Roxy Garstad is the Collection Assessment Librarian at MacEwan University in Edmonton, AB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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