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JIGSAW by Miriam Moss


by Miriam Moss & illustrated by Tony Smith

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1997
ISBN: 0-7613-0074-0
Publisher: Millbrook

The book's cover declares, ``Piece together the mystery!''- -but readers' hopes for some sleuthing are never realized in a series of sentences with internal rhyme: ``In a wood beneath a hood—/something stirred.'' Jigsaw-puzzle pieces on each page echo aspects of the full image in the double-page spread. Elements of the Red Riding Hood story are presented—woods, wolf, girl—but at book's end, there is no story, just a little girl putting together a puzzle that has the same image as the last illustration, of her and a wolf. That last and crucial picture is glued to the back cover, rendering the book difficult to use in libraries, but the main problem is that the suspense vanishes in that peculiar and disappointing scene. The book is suddenly pointless, and a use of gaudy typefaces and a jarring page design cannot compensate for the lack of drama. (Picture book. 4-9)