Monday, October 25, 2021

Spooky illustrated children's book by Liniers

Here's something a bit more modern, with some wonderful artwork. Argentine cartoonist Ricardo Siri, who uses the pen name Liniers, wrote and illustrated the children's book Lo que hay antes de que haya algo in 2006, and it was translated into English by Elisa Amado and published in 2014 as What There Is Before There is Anything Else.

It's an unsettling short tale about confronting and coming to terms with the nighttime and our dreams. From a perspective suitable for a child, but still spooky (as a good children's tale should be), Liniers captures in words and images what seems to be a fever dream.

I've never seen a ghost. But I have a very distinct memory from when I was 8 or 9 years old, living in that old house in Clayton, New Jersey. I was feverish, and I awoke at some point and imagined that there were a half-dozen tall figures standing around the edges of the bed, looking down at me. In my memory, they weren't malevolent, but it was still quite disconcerting. (Given that this the same house where I watched the likes of The House of Seven Corpses, Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things and Salem's Lot at far too young of an age, the only thing that's surprising is that I didn't see more flickering phantoms or hear more things go bump in the night.)

Anyway, Liniers' illustrations in this children's book reminded me of that odd memory. 

If you want to read another take on this book, check out Ryan Billingsley's review on Dad Suggests.

No comments:

Post a Comment