Carmine: A Little More Red

Common Sense Media says

Busy retelling of Red Riding Hood is a winner.





What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable
Violence & scariness
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Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there's nothing scary about this retelling of the Red Riding Hood story.

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What's the story?

The story itself is familiar to most of us -- Red Riding Hood (here, Carmine) steps off the path on the way to Grandma's giving the wolf time to mess with everyone's plans. (Fortunately for little kids, this wolf has no interest in turning Grandma -- or Carmine -- into a meal.)

Is it any good?


There's a lot going on in this revamped, revved up version of Little Red Riding Hood. CARMINE: A LITTLE MORE RED works as an alphabet book using an impressive vocabulary -- including "surreal" and "pluck"; a graphic mini-novel with much of the dialog in balloons; and of course an intriguing way of reexamining a favorite fairytale. Kids will be able to revisit the book as they mature and discover new ways to read the story, and adults will like the witty take on tradition.

Carmine is a fleshed-out character with a love of painting and the wolf is now more than just a villain; he's a dad with a hungry brood to feed. (Kids can weigh in on whether or not this makes a difference in their wolf sympathies.) Rich illustrations offer up many details. Kids who might not have the patience for the rather wordy tale can follow the story by exploring the pictures from their favorite reader's lap.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can act out the story with kids who are too young to know the real (and scarier) version. Older kids can compare and contrast the two versions and think about rewriting their own favorite fairy tale. Goldilocks anyone? Or how about Jack and the Beanstalk?

Book details

Author:Melissa Sweet
Illustrator:Melissa Sweet
Genre:Fairy Tale
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Houghton Mifflin Children's Books
Publication date:May 2, 2005
Number of pages:40
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 7
Read aloud:4
Read alone:8

This review of Carmine: A Little More Red was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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