From the Cautionary Fables & Fairytales series

An eclectic anthology sure to provoke, amuse, and entertain.

An ethnically diverse assembly of artists present graphic interpretations of Asian folktales ranging from silly or spooky to dark and mysterious.

The collection contains 21 stories unevenly representing the continent; 11 are from China or Japan, with four selections from India and one each from the Arabian Peninsula, Georgia, Tibet, Myanmar, Turkey, and Laos. The comics vary in length and popularity just as much as they do in the looks of their artistic styles. While the majority of retellings follow a traditional approach, some include modern touches. “#EndoftheWorld,” by Shannon Campbell and Lucy Bellwood, finds Makara, the vahana, or mount, of the river goddess Ganga from Hindu culture, communicating the imminent end of the world via Twitter. Most of the tales are stand-alone ventures; “Gold Sister, Silver Sister, and Wood Sister,” by Blue Delliquanti, is a sobering tale from Tibet about how a family that’s cruelly manipulated by a ghost eventually banishes her. Other, shorter comics give brief glimpses into larger legends; “From the Journey of the Monkey King,” by Gene Luen Yang, gives the backstory of how Pigsy comes to join the infamous Journey to the West. There’s a mix of light and dark themes; “Hoichi the Earless,” by Nina Matsumoto, tells how a monk successfully eludes ghosts—but not without a price. While some stories will inevitably stand out more than others, each black-and-white rendition is solid in its storytelling.

An eclectic anthology sure to provoke, amuse, and entertain. (Graphic traditional literature. 11-13)

Pub Date: April 15, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-945820-34-2

Page Count: 209

Publisher: Iron Circus Comics

Review Posted Online: Jan. 14, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019



Paulsen recalls personal experiences that he incorporated into Hatchet (1987) and its three sequels, from savage attacks by moose and mosquitoes to watching helplessly as a heart-attack victim dies. As usual, his real adventures are every bit as vivid and hair-raising as those in his fiction, and he relates them with relish—discoursing on “The Fine Art of Wilderness Nutrition,” for instance: “Something that you would never consider eating, something completely repulsive and ugly and disgusting, something so gross it would make you vomit just looking at it, becomes absolutely delicious if you’re starving.” Specific examples follow, to prove that he knows whereof he writes. The author adds incidents from his Iditarod races, describes how he made, then learned to hunt with, bow and arrow, then closes with methods of cooking outdoors sans pots or pans. It’s a patchwork, but an entertaining one, and as likely to win him new fans as to answer questions from his old ones. (Autobiography. 10-13)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-385-32650-5

Page Count: 150

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2000


Seuss, with 82 years and 44 books to his credit, is in better than "pretty good shape"; he's in top form with this book...

Over the past 30 years, Dr. Seuss has endeared himself to millions of youngsters (and harried older types) with his tales of such giggle-producing creatures as "The Cat in the Hat" and "Yertle the Turtle."

Now, finally, he's written a book for those he calls "obsolete children." It's the nicest thing to happen to "senior citizens" since Medicare. This time around, the Doctor enlists his jaunty rhymes and sprightly illustrations to present a not altogether tongue-in-cheek look at that unnerving ritual of aging, "the medical check-up." His reactions to the whole demeaning (and distinctly expensive) process are so wryly knowing he might well have entitled his opus "The Cynic in the Clinic." The medical profession, under Seuss' steady gaze, comes in for some hilarious—and pointed—joshing. The action takes place at the "Golden Years Clinic on Century Square for Spleen Readjustment and Muffler Repair." Here, after first undergoing an "Eyesight and Solvency Test" (the chart reads "Have you any idea how much money these tests are costing you?"), the grey-mustachioed hero meets a battery of specialists including "Von Crandall, the World-Renowned Ear Man" and "Dr. Pollen, the Allergy Whiz." These worthies pinch, prod and poke about in search of such maladies as "Prone Picker's Plight" and "Chimney Sweep's Stupor." Diets are devised—"What you like. . .forget it!" Seuss has a great deal of fun with the "Pill Drill," in which the hero must memorize the dosages of a bewildering medicinal array: "I take the pill with zebra stripes to cure my early evening gripes. . .This long flat one is what I take if I should die before I wake." Having mastered that challenge, he goes from being "properly pilled" to being "properly billed." Finally, socks, coat and pants restored, necktie back under his chin, he's pleased to assure himself, "You're in pretty good shape for the shape you are in."

Seuss, with 82 years and 44 books to his credit, is in better than "pretty good shape"; he's in top form with this book that's sure to delight "obsolete children," and even those of us who are merely obsolescent. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Feb. 12, 1986

ISBN: 0394551907

Page Count: 56

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Oct. 19, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 1986

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