22 February 2010

You know, for kids

Just a quick note this evening to drool over "The Rabbits" by John Marsden and illustrated by Shaun Tan. An Australian children's picture book (as in a book from Australia, not necessarily exclusively for antipodean enfants) it tells the history of the European conquest of Australia from the indigenous perspective and throws in a whole lot of amazing thoughts on sustainability and ecology all wrapped up in some of the most jaw-droppingly stunning artwork I have ever seen in a book, as if Ralph Steadman and Dave McKean had collaborated on Yellow Submarine. Just beautiful.

"The Rabbits" was one of three Tan books I picked up a while back on the recommendation of Mr Rhino, the other two being "The Lost Thing" and "The Arrival", and all three get the Unkie Dave seal of approval.

You don't actually need to have children of your own to buy them, but its probably best to buy them online so you avoid looking creepy while hanging out in the kids' section of your local bookshop minus any actual accompanying children. If you feel odd keeping them for yourself, surreptitiously give them to your friends' children as christmas and/or birthday presents and then run away quickly leaving mummy and daddy to deal with the subsequent questions of "What does 'They stole our children' mean?"

A fun night for the whole family is thus ensured.

Links
Shaun Tan's website
Interview with Tan in Dublin
Interview with Tan in the Guardian

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