Friday, December 9, 2016

Peacock Pie: A Book of Rhymes by Walter de la Mare; with illustrations by W. Heath Robinson (1913, 1924)

This book has a varied publishing history; if I understand correctly, it was first published in England in 1913; then illustrated by W. Heath Robinson in 1916; then published in the United States around 1917 or so; the copy I have in my hands is (I think) from the early 1920s.

There are some tremendously good poems in here, absolutely lovely stuff.  Robinson's illustrations are so evocative of the period as well, and perfectly match the poems, although I will say each illustration feels like stepping into an antique shop.

Peacock Pie, a Book of RhymesPeacock Pie, a Book of Rhymes by Walter de la Mare
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Some tremendously good poems in here. The latter half of the book as my favorite. Some of the poems are quite haunting, particularly "The Song of the Secret." Beautiful poems too - "Silver" is one of those. And some funny and cute poems, that old children's magazines were famous for.

I read the edition illustrated by W. Heath Robinson, whose pictures are perfect and evocative of the era - although his illustrations are a bit liking stepping into an antique store. You can almost smell the old doll's clothing and costume jewelry and furniture polish.

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