King Albert and Queen Charlotte have endured Princess Rosina's tricksfrom a rat on a dinner platter to a fish in the bathbut now King Albert decides to advertise for a prince (hoping that once their daughter gets married she'll live far enough away so that her pranks can't reach them). Prince Roderick answers the ad, and King Albert insists that he undergo three ordeals to win Rosina's hand. First, the prince must eat a huge cake by dawn, a task which seems im possible until the king sneaks away to help him. Secondly, Roderick must sew a dress for Rosina by dawn; this time the queen comes to his aid. Rosina decides that his third ordeal will be to walk a tightrope between two towers, believing that she's successfully postponed matri mony, until she finds out that the prince isn't a princehe's an acrobat. With the tables turned, Rosina falls in love, and the rest of the story ends predictably. Costa's drawings show off the spunky princess and her beleaguered parents to funny, full advantage, saving this tale from a rather feeble ending. (38
PreS-Gr 3 In this humorous story, King Albert and Queen Charlotte find themselves nervous and exasperated when they become the targets of their daughter's practical jokes. In their desperation, they decide that the solution is to find a suitor to marry her (and take her far away!). However, as in all good fairy tales, the eager Prince must first pass three ordeals in order to earn the hand of the Princess. After a little help from the King and Queen, and a surprise from the Prince that serves to endear him to the Princess, they wed and together gallop happily off into the sunset (much to the delight of the King and Queen). This amusing storyline is accompanied by stylized cartoon-like full-color illustrations that complement the comic tone of the plot. The solution to the King and Queen's problem may be sexist, but all is told in the frolicking atmosphere of a long-ago fairy tale kingdom. Deb Andrews, Kokomo-Howard County Public Library, Ind.