I was thrilled to see this cute new version of Little Red Riding Hood! Little Red on skates! Yes, please!
Thanks to Tara Lazar for taking the time to chat with me about her new picture book, and thanks to Random House for the review copy of the lovely LITTLE RED GLIDING HOOD.
This adorable picture book is a wonderful edition to any child’s collection, but will particularly appeal to kids who LOVE fairy tale mash-ups and/or ice skating. YAY for Picture Books with Sporty Girls!
Little Red tells the tale of the classic red hooded heroine whose grandmother lives deep in the enchanted forest. But in this version, her ice skates are in bad need of repair. The only way to get a new pair is to win the local pairs championship, but Little Red doesn’t have a partner. What will she do??
Along Little Red's journey, author Tara Lazar (with help from Troy Cummings on illustrations) explores the competition. Everyone is surprised by the unexpected partner Red ends up finding. I love the twist on the classic story--and I love how Lazar has incorporated almost every fairy tale you could think of into her story. Cummings' pictures take the story to another level--kids will be able to tell their own stories about the secondary characters by reading between the lines of the illustrations.
I heartily give this adorable book FIVE stars. It’s something that kids will want to hear over and over—and parents won’t mind reading again and again. There’s something new to be seen in each retelling.
Isn't the cover adorable?
Tara took a few minutes to answer some questions:
KCA: I love the theme of LITTLE RED GLIDING HOOD, can you tell us about the inspiration?
TL: One day Corey Rosen Schwartz was sitting in my kitchen, trying to figure out what the follow-up to THE THREE NINJA PIGS should be. I said, "The wolf's in Little Red Riding Hood, how about Ninja Red Riding Hood?" And so off a-writin' she went...
A few weeks later she was back. "I've got a title and I can't do a thing with it! But it's perfect for you!" That title? LITTLE RED GLIDING HOOD. As a former figure skater, I was immediately inspired. YES! And so off a-writin' I went...
So we gave each other ideas for each other's books. And now we'll be doing appearances with our two REDs.
KCA: Is there any funny/interesting anecdote you can share about the book's journey to publication?
TL: The journey to publication was a like a winding, frozen river. My editor immediately liked the concept, but thought the manuscript needed work. So I revised. Then she asked me to keep going, put in a little more wacky nursery rhyme and fairy tale stuff. So I revised again. By the time I finished that revision, she was on maternity leave. I had to wait about 6 months until she came back and had time to review the new version. Once she did, I finally got the offer.
Then, guess what? She had me revise it two more times!
And Grandma's final line...that took months for me to figure out. But when it finally hit me, I knew it was perfect.
Finally, five years after I first wrote it, Little Red Gliding Hood is skating into kid's hearts!
Thanks, Tara! I love your wonderful book—I’m sure it will be adored by kids for years to come.