From School Library JournalKindergarten-Grade 4-This retelling of "Snow White and Rose Red" is significantly different from the original and from other recent picture-book versions. Andreasen omits Rose's sister entirely, setting the stage for his heroine's feminist traits. Rose acts independently, is fearless when a bear (actually a prince under the spell of an evil dwarf) comes calling, and is noted for her intelligence. While the sisters in the original tale assist the wicked dwarf in good-Samaritan style, Andreasen's character is more of an opportunist. At each encounter, she spies the treasure that has been stolen from the bear and extracts the promise of an exchange for her assistance in freeing him. Thus, there is no need for the "bear prince" to use force on the dwarf in the final scene (as in the original). Rose has already reclaimed the prince's treasures and inadvertently rendered the little man helpless by cutting off his hair-the source of his power. The spell over the prince is broken, and he emerges for his "happily ever after." The stylized scenes capture the warm interior light of the cottage and provide interest through shifting perspectives. The gilt endpapers and Nouveau-inspired borders lend an appropriate richness to the story. Those who prefer the original with its altruistic bent, more colorful language, and dramatic climax will want to stick with Gennady Spirin's Snow White and Rose Red (Paperstar, 1997) or the one by Ruth Sanderson (Little, Brown, 1997). An additional purchase. Wendy Lukehart, Dauphin County Library, Harrisburg, PA Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
I have always loved the tales of Snow-White, Rose-Red, and Briar-Rose.