Bean Stalker and Other Hilarious Scary Tales by Kiersten White (review)
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Reviewed by
White, Kiersten Bean Stalker and Other Hilarious Scary Tales; illus. by Karl Kwasny. Scholastic, 2017[240p]
ISBN 978-0-545-94060-3 $16.99
Reviewed from galleys R Gr. 4–6

In this collection of ten fractured fairy tales, White explores the gross, the odd, and the unexpected while using characters that will be familiar to an audience who may think they have outgrown them. Here, Little Red becomes a zombie, ferociously gobbles up the brain of the wolf, and then bites the smarmy woodsman who foolishly believes he could save her; Cinderella is fire obsessed but luckily hits it off with Prince Charring, and they joyfully kiss while the castle burns nearby; until other characters figure out the difference between a pea and pee, best to stay away from porridge or mattresses stacked up in giant piles because . . . ew. Accessible storytelling combines with familiar motifs in stories that often rely on puns, delighting readers who appreciate wordplay. Spot illustrations tap into the snarky humor and darker take on the stories that are so effectively balanced here. Plan for uproarious amusement when using this as a readaloud, or add this to a list of books where you can almost guarantee that even a reluctant reader will find something in here to thoroughly enjoy. [End Page 473]

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