I love books. I live them, sleep them and even used to eat them as a child. Well, kind of… I used to hide in the toilet and eat paper. My dad used to bang on the door saying ‘I know what you are doing in there and it is not peeing.’ He then took me to the doctor who told me (dishonestly) that I was going to die. I stopped eating paper.
It is not just reading books that I love; I love smelling them, feeling them, stroking them. I especially like seeing them peering at me from my shelf, I feel naughty and in awe.
I want to tell you about one particular book that has really got me…
Topsy Turvy Tales is a collection of tales by Charlotte Boulay-Goldsmith and illustrations by Laura Hyde. With a white clothbound cover with spooky italic writing, you want to open it immediately…
The tales are wacky and wonderful. If there are corners of your imagination you thought you could only get to through hallucinogenics, this will take you there for only £12.99, minus the come down.
The illustrations, which are strikingly similar to those of Edward Gorey and Tim Burton help you along. Before you know it, you are taken into the upside-down, wonky individual universe of each tale.
Unlike other surreal writing which can sometimes leave you aimlessly in the land of the absurd, with Topsy Turvy Tales you are guided onwards by philosophical messages. It’s this that is so brilliant about this debut title from Charlotte Boulay-Goldsmith – you actually learn lessons about life. Whether it is the Quest of the Head, describing the difficulties of self love and self acceptance that I encounter EVERY bloody day. Similarly, the Girl with the Liquid Eyes warns us against indulging in the all encompassing misery of break ups. Despite the quaintness of the tales, you relate.
I don’t want to tell you about each tale. I don’t want to spoil the extraordinary surprise that is Topsy Turvy Tales. I just want to tell you to buy it. It is the dream gift for absolutely anyone.
Once more, you will be supporting Humpty Dumpty Publishing. This is their first title and I am hoping there will be many more. It’s bloody tough in publishing at the minute and anyone who is willing to take the bull by the horns, ride it, and produce a copy of Topsy Turvy Tales, deserves one bling medal.