FICTION

The Cook and the King

Abrams. May 2019. 32p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781419737572.
COPY ISBN
PreS-Gr 2–The marvelous team behind The Flying Bath are back to show readers how a timid chef comes to work for a persnickety king. During a trial run at fish and chips, each page’s quatrain explains how the cook, Wobbly Bob, pleads, “I’m scared! I’m scared! I’m terribly scared!” before each step of preparation, so the king executes every task himself, from catching fish and digging up potatoes to chopping and frying. The chef steps back as the hungry king creates culinary masterpieces. Donaldson’s storytelling is ever bright, and Roberts’s lush cartoons masterfully mix the luxurious with the ridiculous. A tapestry unicorn rolls an eye as the king declines pizza and a cat claws away a half-burned wiener from the table. The patterns and textures beg to be touched.
VERDICT This visual festival will be a hit at storytime.

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