Dad of Divas' Reviews: Book Review - The Singing Bones

Friday, September 2, 2016

Book Review - The Singing Bones

The Singing Bones

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About the Book
Wicked stepmothers, traitorous brothers, cunning foxes, lonely princesses: There is no mistaking the world of the Brothers Grimm and the beloved fairy tales that have captured generations of readers. Now internationally acclaimed artist Shaun Tan shows us the beautiful, terrifying, amusing, and downright peculiar heart of these tales as never before seen.

With a foreword by Neil Gaiman and an introduction by renowned fairy-tale expert Jack Zipes, this stunning gallery of sculptural works will thrill and delight art lovers and fairy-tale aficionados alike.

My Take on the Book
When I first saw this book with the title THE SINGING BONES, I was not sure what to expect. Reading the forward by Neil Gaiman gave me the story behind this gifted artist~ Shaun Tan. Reading the introduction gave me the history of the Grimm brothers and their life and collection of folk and fairy tales. I think it is essential to the reader to read both of these sections.

Shaun Tan has taken 75 of the Grimm brothers' folk and fairy tales and illustrated them with a sculpture made of paper mache or clay. Some are painted, some are carved very simply, some are carved intricately. If you are familiar with the story , you will understand the reason he chose the particular sculpture to feature the folk or fairy tale.

In the story of Hansel and Gretel, the illustrator created a larger than life witch figure looking down on the gingerbread house and the small children sculptures eating. Rapunzel is a beautiful simple sculpture with long flowing blonde hair, and Briar Rose is an intricate sculpture of a thorny stem with one rose attached.

The illustrator tells the reader that he was inspired to create sculptures by the Inuit stone carvings and those of the pre-Columbian art period. Even though the sculptures are solid pieces , the reader will see the emotion and the story behind his creations.

I found this book very interesting . I believe Shaun Tan has discovered a beautiful and creative avenue to illustrate the Grimm brothers collection of folk and fairy tales.
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