Global warming is a serious matter, with the ice-caps melting and the weather becoming more and more bizarre; can it really be all put down to an excess of wind emanating from the rear ends of cows? That’s the conclusion of a worldwide fact finding mission by dolphins set up following a summit held by all the animals of the earth. But, if that’s the problem, what is the solution? At another animal-wide debate, many suggestions are made – a complete ban, surgery, special diets? All are deemed unacceptable until a porpoise suggests collecting the farts to power a giant factory to freeze the ice again – problem solved. Or it’s only the start of yet another ‘talking shop’.
This timely book is a scary satire on the state of our planet. Using floral patterns, printed and colour paper, fabric and newsprint collage, as well as paint and pencil, Houssais’ surrealistic illustrations are populated by a host of animals large and small. There are floral fish, flamingoes, minibeasts, pigs and elephants, be-suited committees of penguins, bears, crocodiles, sheep, donkeys, pandas, zebras and porpoises, as well as ubiquitous cows of all shapes and sizes all engaged in any number of bizarre activities.
The sophistication of the ideas, both verbal and visual and the satirical nature of the whole, mean that this book should have a place well beyond the primary classroom.