Allan Ahlberg has created some of our family’s favourite books. Now, teaming up with his daughter to create ‘Goldilocks’, he has provided another. There is nothing not to like in this book. A riff on the classic fairy tale, it’s warm, witty and beautifully produced.
Walker Books have worked wonders with the production values. The various flaps and tabs work perfectly and easily. Both my 7 year old and 3 year old have been in fits of giggles with this book, though as with many Ahlberg books it is probably too fragile to be left in the hands of younger readers. Much to my children’s delight there is a book within a book, an idea that always seems to be a winner (my favourite being Colin Mcnaughton’s ‘We’re Off to Look for Aliens’). The book inside even has its own pop up flaps. It’s a triumph of cardboard engineering.
There are 7 stories in the book, all offering a variation on the original story. There are multi-storey houses with multiple bears, furniture-eye views, aliens, large numbers of buns and a bun-fight. The final story is reminiscent of Ahlberg’s ‘Each Peach Pear Plum’. The Goldilocks Variations is a triumph from start to finish, a beautiful book, filled with magical stories that will entrance children and adults alike.