________________ CM . . . . Volume XXII Number 5. . . .October 2, 2015


The Emperor’s New Uniform. (Tadpoles: Fairytale Twists).

Maureen Haselhurst. Illustrated by Kelly Kennedy.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2015.
32 pp., pbk., hc., pdf & html, $8.95 (pbk.), $20.76 (RLB).
ISBN 978-0-7787-1959-5 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-1933-5 (RLB), ISBN 978-1-4271-7697-4 (pdf), ISBN 978-1-4271-7689-9 (html).

Grades 1-3 / Ages 6-8.

Review by Robert Groberman.

*** /4



Designers from all over the world brought him all kinds of trendy outfits, but none of them was special enough for the Emperor. As he watched, Frankie thought of a trick. “I’ll make Enrico look really silly,” he thought, smiling.


Maureen Haselhurst’s enjoyable take on The Emperor’s New Clothes places the ‘emperor’ character on a contemporary soccer team where his name is Enrico and he is the star player. He is so vain that he looks everywhere for the perfect new uniform for himself. A crafty teammate presents him with the gift of a uniform so “cool” that only top soccer players can see it. Poor soccer players cannot. Of course, no one, including Enrico, himself, will admit that he is not wearing a uniform for the big game but is actually in his underwear. No one will admit that the uniform is invisible, lest that person be thought a poor player. It is not until Sass, the team’s biggest fan, points out that Enrico needs to put on a uniform that Enrico realizes his foolishness.

     Haselhurst’s retelling of this well-known story is lively and fast-moving. Young readers will enjoy the setting of a soccer match and the characters being soccer players and their fans. Kelly Kennedy’s colourful illustrations add to young readers’ understanding of the story. Vocabulary in this story should not be difficult for a capable grade one or early grade two reader.


Robert Groberman is a grade one teacher at Katzie Elementary School in Surrey, BC.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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