The Ark in the Garden: Fables for Our Times
. Distributed in the U.S. by General Distribution Services , Macfarlane Walter & Ross . Buffalo ,
PR9197.35.P64 A65 1998 (Carlson Fable Collection, BIC bldg)
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There are six fine satirical works in this collection. A Christmas Lorac by Margaret Atwood stands Dickens on his head in a chilling reversal. The Ark in the Garden by Timothy Findley is a fine redoing of James Thurber's The Unicorn in the Garden. Come, Said the Eagle by Neil Bissoondath is a strong feminist story about a family's incomprehension of its one woman. The Axe and the Trees by Jane Urquhart may be closest to a fable. The axe destroys the forest for profit, and ultimately destroys itself. From Plus-Fours to Minus-Fours by Rohinton Mistry I found whimsical but alienating. A society of kite-flyers and mountain-climbers becomes dominated by golfers. The Banana Wars by Yves Beauchemin (translated by Alberto Manguel) takes us through several phases of domination by Big Foot monkeys over Long Hand monkeys, complete with two successive dictators. The writing and art are both lively. I am happy to have another book that is specifically Canadian in the collection.