This is an extraordinary book — remarkable, but also odd. Each two-page spread depicts a toy animal, illustrated in broad brushstrokes, with an accompanying caption. So far, so normal. Yet the muted colours of the board-paper are reflected in the lonely, melancholy air each animal exudes and the tone of the captions, which are riddled with insecurity and sadness. A stuffed rabbit claims, “I have often had sleepless nights”. A kangaroo, joey in pouch, baldly states, “We can not afford it”. A panda looks depressed, declaring “All my evenings are engaged”.
Some small children may recoil from the gloom that hangs over the book. Others may respond positively, taking comfort from seeing their own anxieties given a voice and a relatively friendly face.