The Chinese Emperor's New Clothes 16/02/18
Beauty and the Beast
It's a familiar tale, but an absolute classic – and now beautifully packaged into a hardback "pop-in" edition.
In case you don't know the story, here you go: when their father goes away on a trip, two of his three daughters beg for costly gifts. However, his other daughter, Beauty, asks simply for a rose.
Unfortunately, their father gets lost and stumbles into a crumbling mansion and grounds. As he leaves, he plucks a rose – but out comes a monstrous-looking thing called Beast who says he must be punished.
When Beauty hears of this, she sacrifices herself and becomes the Beast's captive. But soon she starts to see behind the hideous appearance – and wonders if there is more to a beast than meets the eye...
This fairy tale is told very well by Katie Haworth, but the real star of the show is Dinara Mirtalipova's rich illustrations, full of deep, vivid colour, and the incredible 3D scenes that appear through clever paper cutouts.
Although turning the pages can be a little heavy and clumsy, it's worth it for the end effect: like peering through a magically lit window on a cold winter's night.