Thursday, November 11, 2010

Revisiting Old Favorites -- Goldilocks Again

Me and You
by Anthony Browne
Farrar Straus and Giroux, 2010 (originally published in 2009 in Great Britain)
review copy provided by the publisher

Did you ever wonder about Goldilocks' side of the story? In Anthony Browne's version, we get one possible answer to who she is and how she winds up in the three bears' house.

Goldilocks' story is told wordlessly, in sepia-colored panels on the left side of each double page spread. Her story looks modern -- a girl who goes out shopping with her mother, follows a balloon to try to catch it, and becomes lost.  Little Bear tells the story of his family going for a walk while they wait for their soup to cool. The Three Bears' story takes up the entire right-hand page of the spread, is in color, is drawn in a storybook style, and includes the text. When Goldilocks runs away from the Bears' house, she runs back through the modern, sepia-colored city scenes and is reunited with her mother. Little Bear is left at his window, wondering what becomes of the girl who had been asleep in his bed.

If you know Anthony Browne's work, you know this version isn't as simple as presenting us with two parallel stories. The cover holds a clue that the world of the Three Bears and Goldilocks' modern world might just be a little closer to one another than we might imagine. Go back to the illustrations of the bears taking their walk and think about what you see there.

Are we a part of the fairy tale story, or is the fairy tale a part of ours? As always, Anthony Browne makes us think and wonder.

I hope you've enjoyed this week of revisiting old favorites! I've certainly enjoyed sharing them with you!


  1. Have you seen the book "Somebody and the Three Blairs" by Marilyn Tolhurst? I find that version, where the part of "Goldilocks" is played by a bear, amusing.

  2. I love that it is set in the city, I am going to have to look for this book.


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