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Book Review: The Gashlycrumb Tinies

The Gashlycrumb Tinies was written and illustrated by my favorite artist: Edward Gorey. If you have never seen any of his work, I would recommend picking up one, or all, of his four anthologies: Amphigorey, Amphigorey Too, Amphigorey Again, and Amphigorey Also. After that, if you’re looking for some insight into the strange person who came up with all this weirdness, the book Ascending Peculiarity is a pretty entertaining book of of interviews given by Gorey.

I think the first time I saw The Gashlycrumb Tinies was on a poster in a college dorm room. The book is essentially a morbid alphabet primer done with Gorey’s inimitable black and white art. Here is the entry for A:

gashlycrumb tiniesEvery child meets a dreadful end, and in the process, we get to relearn the alphabet. The person who had this on their wall was rapidly cycling through identities and was in their macabre phase. “I’m serious. I mope. Let me be, but please notice my poster.”

I like it because it does not remind me of anything else. There are a lot of things that remind me of Edward Gorey’s art, but nothing else makes me think of him.

If you’re looking for more of his books, first, check your library. If you must buy them, I would recommend this store, which is my favorite Edward Gorey merchandise extravaganzorium so far. Just please don’t let me drive you to goth-dom. If I see you walking down the street with an Edward Gorey lunchbox, acting all sad in your black leather duster, I won’t be able to live with myself.

This artist was a peculiar person, which resulted in some wonderful art. If he were still alive, I would love for him to work on a reissue of The Wish Giver.


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