What’s the biggest complaint we have about children’s books? That’s exactly right: there aren’t enough animals doing martial arts. Authors Rebecca J. Gomez and Corey Rosen Schwartz, along with Caldecott Medal winning illustrator Dan Santat, have heard our prayers and are delivering the goods in their newest book, Hensel and Gretel: Ninja Chicks. This adventure, about two sister-chickens on a mission to save their father from a cunning, cornbread-house-dwelling fox, is truly the purest distillation of the folk tale’s values since the Grimm Brothers. Don’t believe me? Watch the book trailer below.
Santat’s illustrations are a premium blend of watercolor softness and comic book dynamism and, as Booklist notes, “Schwartz’s and Gomez’s lively limericks tell the story in a swift, kicky rhythm”. Kung Fu is clearly an obsession of sorts for Shwartz and Santat, considering their previous successes with The Three Little Ninja Pigs and Ninja Red Riding Hood. If the result is a book this exciting and goofy, why ever stop?
Hensel and Gretel: Ninja Chicks hits bookstores (brick-and-mortar and digital alike) on May 24.
Featured image courtesy of Dan Santat / G.P. Putnam’s Sons