A
 
Web www.artsmart.co.za
A R T S M A R T
arts news from kwazulu-natal

literature
www.artsmart.co.za
enquiries@artsmart.co.za
 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
 

NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

AMBERVULTURECROCS (article first published : 2006-01-13)

Let me introduce you to some weird and wonderful creatures created by Irma Chait in her enchanting book Ambervulturecrocs.

There’s the Jumpy Gecko-meleon, the Harebrained Secretary Bird complete with rabbit ears and a packet of Snaky Snacks on her desk, the Monkeystrich whose mate is ever alert to stop her from dropping her eggs on unfriendly ground and the Octohorse who trips himself up with his eight legs when he tries to gallop.

Then there’s a high-stepping chorus line-up of Zebrapedes complete with top hats and sparkling smiles and the Fleagle who needs calming pills to stop her jumping on her eggs after she’s laid them. Or the Bee-squito who can’t work out whether he’s a mosquito or a bee and people are afraid of catching “beelaria” from him!

The Pollypiggle is an absolute hoot as is the Flamingoose - and her mate, the flamingander! - not to mention the Penguinroo! And spare a moment of sympathy for the Swallow-whale who is torn between the desire to swim or fly.

A former secondary school Latin teacher with four children of her own, Irma Chait has self-published four other children’s books over the year – the Rodney books – also in rhyme.

The inspiration for Ambervulturecrocs came from a collaboration with her son Norman about 30 years ago whey they had a lot of fun making up a rhyme for one of his school projects. A recent family gathering saw them revisiting the rhymes with Norman’s children. Her daughter Lisa showed the rhymes to a friend in the publishing world and Ambervulturecrocs was on its way.

The poems offer different rhythms which should pose a fun challenge for young and old alike who are unused to reading poetry aloud but their listeners will be entranced by the stories and Tony Grogan’s clever and highly humorous illustrations. He has beautifully interpreted Irma Chait’s mixed species and my favourite is the Chimparaffe who is allergic to trees!

No doubt characters like the Nyala-Impala, Tortiskunk, Porcu-gorill or the Kudu-gnu will stimulate questions from youngsters unfamiliar with some of the animal species so the book has an educational value as well.

Between them, Irma Chait and Tony Grogan have created pure magic in a book which is sure to delight anyone with an offbeat sense of humour.

Ambervulturecrocs is a handy-sized book published by Struik with a sturdy covering and strong paper which can withstand grubby or sticky little fingers as their owners search for their favourite stories. It’s a steal at R89.95! – ISBN 1 77007 164 4 – Caroline Smart




 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
a co-production by caroline smart services and .durbanet. site credits
copyright © subsists in this page. all rights reserved. [ edit ] copyright details  artsmart