~ 1-3-- In considering this series, three words come immediately to mind: repetitious, unappealing, and condescending. The books have an almost identical story line and even repeat certain pages. Three children spend time with one of four (all male) artists who share a large house in the country. As each artist discusses his work, a pesky mouse interrupts the conversation with some kind of damaging (and illogical) accident, but all is well and the children go home with a sample of the artist's work to share with their friends. The books are illustrated with flat, boldly colored cartoons. Like the writing, they are repetitious, with the children wearing identical clothing and expressions throughout the series. Although each features a different artist's studio, there is little to differentiate the spaces and no sense that real artists occupy these rooms. Worse, however, is that although the purpose is to introduce children to the work of artists, that work is treated in a frivolous, trivializing manner. There is no information given about the training, skill, or commitment artists bring to their craft. Rather, there is a distinct impression that the work is easy, even accidental in its nature. The musician hands one of the children a clarinet and says, ``Just blow and music will come out.'' The books also contain statements that are so general as to be misinformation. This series fails on every level. The scant information given about the specific arts can be found in any number of books, and young children will find a more accurate understanding of the creative process in Goffstein's An Artist (1980) , A Writer (1984, both Harper), or Goldie the Dollmaker (Farrar, 1969) .--Eleanor K. MacDonald, Beverly Hills Pub . Lib .