Fearsome Tales for Fiendish Kids
Digital version – browse, print or download
Receive the latest news & reviews direct to your inbox!
This month BfK features Jane Ray’s cover for The Twelve Dancing Princesses. We’re particularly delighted to have the opportunity to use this illustration as it enables us to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Orchard Books - they’re 10 this year! And also to thank them for their help in producing our July cover.
The cover of this book shows a demented girl hammering a spike into the head of a boy who is trying to remove her legs with a saw. This is aptly emblematic of a book which features a flock of pink butterflies made from amputated human eyelids, a youth reduced to ashes while playing a stolen trumpet in an electric storm, and a junior embezzler who inflates a flattened road-kill with a bicycle pump - all within just three stories. These are, however, moral tales, told in a honey-lush prose spiced with salutary bolts of carbolic, and with an amoral relish for the deserving victims' ghastly Nemeses. In my favourite (an hilarious spoof on the Famous Five) the odious Chipper Chums end up as macerating carrion in the cider vat of a murderous farmer. If only real life were like this!