The Terrible Trins
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The cover of this issue is a design incorporating illustrations from four books illustrated by the subject of our Authorgraph, Ian Beck. The top left illustration is from Five Little Ducks (Orchard), the top right from Poppy and Pip's Picnic (to be published Autumn '97 by HarperCollins), the bottom left from The Owl and the Pussy-cat (Transworld) and the bottom right from Home Before Dark (to be published September '97 by Scholastic). Ian Beck's Picture Book (Hippo) is reviewed in this issue.
Beck talks to BfK's interviewer, Julia Eccleshare, also in this issue. His distinctive decorative style with its sensitive pen line and cross hatching has a nostalgic but sometimes also a surreal quality - he describes it as 'a look that is floating, strong and wistful all at the same time'.
Thanks to Orchard, HarperCollins, Transworld and Scholastic for their help in producing this composite cover.
'How sad the mother mouse must be Whose litter numbers only three. The gravest of all mousely sins Is to produce a set of trins.' Mrs Gray, widowed for the third time, decides that her three new cubs will not be just any old Tom, Dick or Harry. No! They will be Thomas, Richard and Henry and she will devote the rest of her life to their education and upbringing and they will be the most remarkable mice ever to have lived at Orchard Farm. 'Future generations will speak of them with awe and wonder.' More masterly stuff from the prolific pen of Dick King-Smith as the mice terrorise the farm cats into leaving and break down the amusingly handled class divisions in the mouse community by inventing five-a-side noseball using Farmer Budge's glass eye as the ball. Oh! and they find mum a new husband along the way.