Three dinosaurs prepare three bowls of pudding at varying temperatures and then lie in wait for a ‘succulent, poorly supervised little girl’ named Goldilocks to come along in this sophisticated adaptation of "Goldilocks and the Three Bears".
This is one of those remarkable picturebooks in which the words and pictures come together perfectly to produce a cumulative effect that is greater than the sum of its parts. Neither the words nor the pictures would be sufficient on their own to tell this particular story: the narrative depends on the interaction between the two. The story is told with Mo Willems’s characteristic humour, from the endpapers displaying rejected titles to the unexpected yet satisfying conclusion featuring two morals (one for humans and one for dinosaurs).
Although familiarity with the source text is not necessarily a prerequisite, this is a book that rewards the knowing reader through intertextual references and careful manipulation of reader expectations. There are repeated visual and verbal allusions to "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" and several of the jokes do assume the reader’s prior knowledge of that story. Fans of Willems will also enjoy references to his back catalogue (look out for a certain pigeon).