Hot Best Seller

Tales from the Inner City Limited Edition Gift Box (Walker Studio)

Availability: Ready to download

TALES OF THE INNER CITY is a collection of incredibly original stories, rich with feeling, strangely moving, almost numinous. And when the reader comes to the artwork, it's like walking into an amazing room, and then throwing open a curtain to see a brilliant scene that makes you understand and appreciate everything you've encountered in a deeper way. TALES OF THE INNER CITY is a collection of incredibly original stories, rich with feeling, strangely moving, almost numinous. And when the reader comes to the artwork, it's like walking into an amazing room, and then throwing open a curtain to see a brilliant scene that makes you understand and appreciate everything you've encountered in a deeper way.


Compare

TALES OF THE INNER CITY is a collection of incredibly original stories, rich with feeling, strangely moving, almost numinous. And when the reader comes to the artwork, it's like walking into an amazing room, and then throwing open a curtain to see a brilliant scene that makes you understand and appreciate everything you've encountered in a deeper way. TALES OF THE INNER CITY is a collection of incredibly original stories, rich with feeling, strangely moving, almost numinous. And when the reader comes to the artwork, it's like walking into an amazing room, and then throwing open a curtain to see a brilliant scene that makes you understand and appreciate everything you've encountered in a deeper way.

30 review for Tales from the Inner City Limited Edition Gift Box (Walker Studio)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Whispering Stories

    Book Reviewed by Stacey on www.whisperingstories.com Tales from the Inner City is a strange, yet an eye-opening book about co-existing with animals and what they can teach us about ourselves. It is a book for older children, teenagers, and even adults. With twenty-five stories about animals, mixed in with poems and some gorgeous artwork, this book has something for everyone. Most of the stories are quite dark and yet very intelligently written. Shaun Tan has used his stories about animals to reflec Book Reviewed by Stacey on www.whisperingstories.com Tales from the Inner City is a strange, yet an eye-opening book about co-existing with animals and what they can teach us about ourselves. It is a book for older children, teenagers, and even adults. With twenty-five stories about animals, mixed in with poems and some gorgeous artwork, this book has something for everyone. Most of the stories are quite dark and yet very intelligently written. Shaun Tan has used his stories about animals to reflect the actions, mannerisms, and emotions of us humans. By understanding the essence of the stories you can take a lot of information away about human behaviour and yourself too. It is kind of like a weird self-help book if you look deeper at the stories, or you can just enjoy them and not look for any hidden meanings, the choice is yours. This is a book to be treasured and delve into now and again. It would make a great coffee table book, one to get people talking. It may even help those going through a change in their lives – especially teenagers to understand the world around them.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Marianne

    “Where money gathers, so do pigeons. They flock to great financial centers like so many accountants in smart grey waistcoats and glittering collars, bright-eyed, strutting, nodding, darting purposefully between the fiscal-black heels of merchant bankers, bartering every walking minute for a tidy profit.” Tales from the Inner City is a picture book for adults by award-winning Australian illustrator and author, Shaun Tan. What a wonderful book! Shaun Tan is so talented. There are twenty-five tales, “Where money gathers, so do pigeons. They flock to great financial centers like so many accountants in smart grey waistcoats and glittering collars, bright-eyed, strutting, nodding, darting purposefully between the fiscal-black heels of merchant bankers, bartering every walking minute for a tidy profit.” Tales from the Inner City is a picture book for adults by award-winning Australian illustrator and author, Shaun Tan. What a wonderful book! Shaun Tan is so talented. There are twenty-five tales, the beginning of each denoted by the black silhouette of a creature: perhaps an animal, bird, fish or insect. This is followed by text, sometimes as prose, sometimes as verse. Some stories are very short, others up to thirty-six pages long. Mostly at the end, but sometimes throughout the story, colour illustrations depict some part of the tale. Those illustrations, wow! They are exquisite, evocative, luminous. The stories that accompany them vary: some are very sad; some are delightfully funny; some are sweet; some are portentous; some are insightful; and some perfectly illustrate the human race’s blindness to what is. Most are wise and some are clever, and Tan’s prose is often just as evocative as his art: “How much do I love our family? This much. When nothing turns out to be what we hoped, we still hope it turns out to be something. We are never the ones to say that life is disappointing. We are always too busy doing stuff., even if we have no idea why.” All this elegance on quality glossy paper contained within a superb hardcover binding. The cover story (Moonfish) is likely to be a favourite, both for the story and the illustration, but the frogs, the dog, the owl, the cat, the bears and the butterflies are exceptional among a book full of tales bound to appeal to many readers. What will this brilliant man come up with next? An utterly beautiful book!

  3. 5 out of 5

    T.D. Whittle

    'Your money is meaningless to us,' said the bears. 'You grasp economics with the same clawless paws you use for fumbling justice.' And, once again, the bears showed us. There they were, God help us, the Ledgers of the Earth, written in clouds and glaciers and sediments, tallied in the colours of the sun and the moon as light passed through the millennial sap of every living thing, and we looked upon it all with dread. Ours was not the only fiscal system in the world, it turned out. And worse, our 'Your money is meaningless to us,' said the bears. 'You grasp economics with the same clawless paws you use for fumbling justice.' And, once again, the bears showed us. There they were, God help us, the Ledgers of the Earth, written in clouds and glaciers and sediments, tallied in the colours of the sun and the moon as light passed through the millennial sap of every living thing, and we looked upon it all with dread. Ours was not the only fiscal system in the world, it turned out. And worse, our debt was severe beyond reckoning. And worse than worse, all the capital we had accrued throughout history was a collective figment of the human imagination: every asset, stock and dollar. We owned nothing. The bears asked us to relinquish our hold on all that never belonged to us in the first place. Well, this we simply could not do. So we shot the bears. Never fear, gentle reader, for while we cannot resurrect the bears, the cows will surely avenge their deaths. I have been following Shaun Tan's work for years now, and was exceptionally happy to attend a talk he gave at a Melbourne bookshop around the time The Bird King was published. This one is my favourite of his works so far, though I love quite a few of them, including the aforementioned Bird King. In the Author Notes Tan released about Tales From The Inner City, he opens with this statement: Tales from the Inner City, a sister volume to my anthology Tales from Outer Suburbia (2008), is a collection of 25 illustrated stories about relationships between humans and animals. The basic premise I set for myself was quite simple: think about an animal in a city. Why is it there? How do people react to it? What meaning does it suggest? The first story I wrote concerned crocodiles living across the entire upper floor of a skyscraper, and this triggered a flow of similar daydreams. (See Allen & Unwin Book Publishers link to download Commentary by Shaun Tan.) This type of artistic process fascinates me, which is probably why I love authors such as Murakami, too, who says he writes in the early mornings before he's fully awake because that's when his subconscious is still tossing up interesting ideas (that's my paraphrasing, not what he actually said). Like Murakami, Tan's books are shot through with images that evoke something powerful in us, through pictures and words, yet they are both elusive and ephemeral. We feel constantly that we are on the brink of grasping something important, which we may lose upon wakening. Tan also had this to say in his notes: What I love about speculative fiction is the way it can address commonplace problems in unusual, hypothetical ways. He offers us a series of poetic and thoughtful illustrated vignettes in Tales From The Inner City , with each story spinning off one of his unusual hypotheticals. The results are stunning. Importantly, my animals never really speak, and their animal natures remain inscrutable. They are beings that move in and out of each story as if trying to tell us something about our own successes and failures as a species, the meaning of our dreams, and our true place in the world . . . (See Allen & Unwin Book Publishers link to download Commentary by Shaun Tan.)

  4. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Original short stories and intriguing illustrations. Lines that spoke to me personally: "Nothing shrinks the imagination like a waiting room, and a lift is nothing if not the smallest of all waiting rooms." So true! Yet, it is one of those things that we 'know' but don't acknowledge until someone else points it out to us. "One day I threw my stick at you. You brought it back. My hand touched your ear. Your nose touched the back of my knee. Then we were walking side by side as if it had always been this Original short stories and intriguing illustrations. Lines that spoke to me personally: "Nothing shrinks the imagination like a waiting room, and a lift is nothing if not the smallest of all waiting rooms." So true! Yet, it is one of those things that we 'know' but don't acknowledge until someone else points it out to us. "One day I threw my stick at you. You brought it back. My hand touched your ear. Your nose touched the back of my knee. Then we were walking side by side as if it had always been this way." This poem is poignant as I have enjoyed relationships with many canine companions over the years and my current one for a decade now. She can read me like a book and knows when I have saved some tidbits from my meal to share, or when we are going to walk in the woods versus a short walk. She leans into me when I need comforting. It feels as though she has always been by my side.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Renee Godding

    Beautiful in so many ways... Tales from the Inner City is a short story collection by author and illustration Shaun Tan, who has combined his talents in both these fields to create a book that is as stunning on the inside as it is on the outside. Shaun Tan is known for his (for the lack of a better word) “experimental” work, and this signature style can be found in this collection as well. His stories are surrealist, without falling in the trap of being “ quirky for the sake of it”. On the surfac Beautiful in so many ways... Tales from the Inner City is a short story collection by author and illustration Shaun Tan, who has combined his talents in both these fields to create a book that is as stunning on the inside as it is on the outside. Shaun Tan is known for his (for the lack of a better word) “experimental” work, and this signature style can be found in this collection as well. His stories are surrealist, without falling in the trap of being “ quirky for the sake of it”. On the surface, each one appears to focus on a different animal featured in it. At the same time, each story is a portrayal of a very human experience or emotion, that many of us will be able to relate to. Some of my favorite stories were: “cat”, “dog”, “moonfish”, “tiger”, “bees” and especially “Owl”, which really got under my skin based on my own personal experiences with childhood illness. The beauty of all these stories is in the way the pictures and words combine to form a unique and more intense, reading experience. Well written as they are, the stories by themselves would have probably gotten a 3.5 star rating on average for me. The illustrations are stunning, but would have been a 4 star on their own. It’s the synergy of both of them combined that makes this collection a full and well deserved five-star that I would love to revisit again in the future.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Deborah Ideiosepius

    This was an enchanting collection of whimsical stories, enhanced by the imaginatively evocative artwork of this very talented artist. This book is a series of stories that kind of defy the imagination to adequately describe. There is an element of urban-fantasy of the more unique variety. They could also be thought of as perfect bedtime stories for adults; reading them was meditative, unexpected and always replete with gentle enchantment that left me feeling emotionally richer for having read the This was an enchanting collection of whimsical stories, enhanced by the imaginatively evocative artwork of this very talented artist. This book is a series of stories that kind of defy the imagination to adequately describe. There is an element of urban-fantasy of the more unique variety. They could also be thought of as perfect bedtime stories for adults; reading them was meditative, unexpected and always replete with gentle enchantment that left me feeling emotionally richer for having read them. Each story is not so much about a specific animal, more like, each story adopts a specific animal as the totem of the story-line. As there are too many to review I will mention one or two. One of the more imaginative, the painting for which is the cover art for the book and which enchanted me the most was the one about the moonfish. A small group of young boys go fishing each night, there is no ocean in their city, they fish off the roof of their apartment building for sky fish, one night they catch the most sought after - the moon fish. In another bears get lawyers and charge humanity with crimes against their race and against the planet. Another starts with ; Crocodiles live on the eighty-seventh floor. And very comfortably, too. So the writing is delightful and the artwork is perfectly complementary to the unique stories. They are whimsical, mythological fairy tales for adults and they are absolutely joyous to read. They might also suit kids, but there is nothing realistic or concrete to ground these stories to reality, so some children might find them difficult.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mathew

    An absolutely fascinating collection of what I can only think of describing as post-modern cautionary tales which, through our relationship with animals, explores man's materialistic obsessions and how we have lost our relationship with animals and the natural world. As with all Tan's work, interpretation is left open and meanings will be rich and varied with some stories' messages clearer than others (perhaps). It is fascinating to think that the blend between extended written narrative and glo An absolutely fascinating collection of what I can only think of describing as post-modern cautionary tales which, through our relationship with animals, explores man's materialistic obsessions and how we have lost our relationship with animals and the natural world. As with all Tan's work, interpretation is left open and meanings will be rich and varied with some stories' messages clearer than others (perhaps). It is fascinating to think that the blend between extended written narrative and glorious paintings throughout all come after Tan's last venture which was The Singing Bones (retellings and explorations of Grimm's fairy tales). In this light, you can begin to see where Tan is going with these stories (wholly his own) and the journey he has taken to get to this point. After a comment on social media about the appropriateness of one of the stories (the word 'shit' crops up in one tale) there is question about whether you could share the book with primary children. I am sure my opinion will differ from others but I will say that Tan's open, ambiguous message about how we are losing touch with the natural world and the creatures in it would be a powerful talking point for children that could affect their perceptions of the world. The openness of the tales means that the reader must make their own conclusions and in doing so, readers would claim a greater ownership over the ideas which Tan is trying to share. That is a very good thing indeed.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Danielle

    A mesmerizing collection of stories and corresponding artwork from Shaun Tan that is also kind of uncategorizable as some of his work tends to be. Each entry focuses on one species of animal in a world that feels like a futuristic, more bizarre version of our own. Nature still exists, but it's not the nature we know now, and animals are different—more populous or less, stranger, magical, changed, and directly in our day to day lives, perhaps because we've destroyed the places they used to live. A mesmerizing collection of stories and corresponding artwork from Shaun Tan that is also kind of uncategorizable as some of his work tends to be. Each entry focuses on one species of animal in a world that feels like a futuristic, more bizarre version of our own. Nature still exists, but it's not the nature we know now, and animals are different—more populous or less, stranger, magical, changed, and directly in our day to day lives, perhaps because we've destroyed the places they used to live. Some connect, some suddenly appear, some take revenge, some are terribly, hopelessly wronged. There are humans in the stories as well, grappling with what we've done and what we can't take back and how to live. Tan's surreal, beautiful art is always captivating. Some of my favorite selections: dog, horse, rhino, frog, orca, tiger, and more. "The bears asked us to relinquish our hold on all that never belonged to us in the first place." "...I need you as much as you need me. And where could we live if not in the bottomless den of each other's shadow?" "Only now, too late, do we remember quietly the things that bind all brothers and sisters in sediment, each husk and bone much the same carbonate as any other: shark, bear, crocodile, owl, pig, lungfish, moonfish, parrot, pigeon, butterfly, bee, tiger, dog, frog, snail, cat, sheep, horse, yak, orca, eagle, hippopotamus, rhinoceros, fox...at lease we gave them our most beautiful words."

  9. 5 out of 5

    Callum McLaughlin

    I love surrealism when it comes to art, but really struggle with it when it comes to prose, which often makes reading Shaun Tan's books a tale of two halves for me. Conceptually, I thought this was excellent; 25 short stories, each one focussed on a different animal, commenting on the beauty, brutality, and complexity that make up man's relationship with nature. Each one is accompanied by at least one stunning double-page illustration. Whilst plot-wise, most of the stories did little for me, I a I love surrealism when it comes to art, but really struggle with it when it comes to prose, which often makes reading Shaun Tan's books a tale of two halves for me. Conceptually, I thought this was excellent; 25 short stories, each one focussed on a different animal, commenting on the beauty, brutality, and complexity that make up man's relationship with nature. Each one is accompanied by at least one stunning double-page illustration. Whilst plot-wise, most of the stories did little for me, I always admired what the author was saying thematically, and I could lose myself in the artwork time and time again. Indeed, looking at Tan's paintings is like stepping inside a dream world; a hypnotically rich and rewarding experience.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Becket

    Y'all, I am not a crier (at least not about books), but the stunning art in this book brought me to tears TWICE. If you're an animal lover, prepare yourself for the possibility of emotional onslaught with every page-turn reveal. Y'all, I am not a crier (at least not about books), but the stunning art in this book brought me to tears TWICE. If you're an animal lover, prepare yourself for the possibility of emotional onslaught with every page-turn reveal.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Elliot

    A gorgeous collection of short fiction paired with stunning artwork. Each tale examines our relationships with the natural world and how animals intersect with humanity, all while using a lens of magical realism. The poetics of the prose, the themes, and the art all work together to create something truly wonderful. My favorite piece by far was the one on dogs, which is no surprise. While it's primarily illustrations more than words that was the one that brought tears to my eyes. I also really lo A gorgeous collection of short fiction paired with stunning artwork. Each tale examines our relationships with the natural world and how animals intersect with humanity, all while using a lens of magical realism. The poetics of the prose, the themes, and the art all work together to create something truly wonderful. My favorite piece by far was the one on dogs, which is no surprise. While it's primarily illustrations more than words that was the one that brought tears to my eyes. I also really loved the ones on snails, pigs, and foxes (so surreal), as well as frogs, tigers, & hippo (social commentary). Honestly I liked them all. Planning on searching out more work by this creator. Book Club: 11/21

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    Everything Shaun Tan does is amazing. This collection of surreal stories about animals in the city is longer, but, like a picture book, does a lot with the visual impact of a page turn, many of which reveal haunting double-page paintings that end each story with a vision that you may or may not have been picturing. Teens and adults will find much to discuss here. I was reminded at different times of stories by Margo Lanagan and Ray Bradbury, and also the visually mysterious book The Mysteries of Everything Shaun Tan does is amazing. This collection of surreal stories about animals in the city is longer, but, like a picture book, does a lot with the visual impact of a page turn, many of which reveal haunting double-page paintings that end each story with a vision that you may or may not have been picturing. Teens and adults will find much to discuss here. I was reminded at different times of stories by Margo Lanagan and Ray Bradbury, and also the visually mysterious book The Mysteries of Harris Burdick, by Chris Van Allsburg. Don't miss Shaun Tan's work if you want to see the best boundary-pushing of the visual storytelling format in books. "And, once again, the bears showed us. There they were, God help us, the Ledgers of the Earth, written in clouds and glaciers and sediments, tallied in the colours of the sun and the moon as light passed through the millennial sap of every living thing, and we looked upon it all with dread. Ours was not the only fiscal system in the world, it turned out. And worse, our debt was severe beyond reckoning. And worse than worse, all the capital we had accrued throughout history was a collective figment of the human imagination: every asset, stock and dollar. We owned nothing. The bears asked us to relinquish our hold on all that never belonged to us in the first place. Well, this we simply could not do. So we shot the bears."

  13. 5 out of 5

    lethe

    Although the art is as beautiful as ever, this book didn't enchant me the way his other books do. The 25 nameless stories all feature a type of animal. Each is preceded by a silhouette of the animal in question and ends with a double-page illustration (some have more than one). The stories are surrealistic and on the whole quite sombre in tone, although that may have been my own frame of mind. My favourite is the one about the Dog, with its many colourful illustrations. Although the art is as beautiful as ever, this book didn't enchant me the way his other books do. The 25 nameless stories all feature a type of animal. Each is preceded by a silhouette of the animal in question and ends with a double-page illustration (some have more than one). The stories are surrealistic and on the whole quite sombre in tone, although that may have been my own frame of mind. My favourite is the one about the Dog, with its many colourful illustrations.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Mikaela Revell

    Shaun Tan has not let me down.

  15. 5 out of 5

    John of Canada

    More Shaun Tan magic. His philosophy is best shown on page 196. Economics and pigeons, technology, and human progress and the yak. WARNING!!! Do not leaf randomly through this book. Read slowly and be astonished. I won´t warn you again. You will be rewarded when you finish each story and turn the page.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Angelina

    Shaun Tan has created a wonderful collection of urban tales (some in the form of poems) - bizarre, poetic and thought provoking, often tinged with a little sadness. And on top of that they are all accompanied by his stunning, luminous illustrations that always linger in you mind after you've closed the last page. On the surface, these stories are dedicated to different animals dwelling in the city - crocodiles, butterflies, giant snails, cats, dogs, horses, fish, frogs, bears and many more. But i Shaun Tan has created a wonderful collection of urban tales (some in the form of poems) - bizarre, poetic and thought provoking, often tinged with a little sadness. And on top of that they are all accompanied by his stunning, luminous illustrations that always linger in you mind after you've closed the last page. On the surface, these stories are dedicated to different animals dwelling in the city - crocodiles, butterflies, giant snails, cats, dogs, horses, fish, frogs, bears and many more. But in reality they are as much about us - the humans trapped in these enormous gray cities, surrounded by noise, pollution and loneliness. They highlight our slipping connection with the natural world, our search for beauty and meaning, out struggles and insecurities. And the animals are there to bring light, joy, wisdom, escape of the dreariness and routine that bring our spirits down. * * * * * * * "And as if in response, the butterflies came to us, descending from dizzying heights like spring blossoms of every imaginable color and pattern. Gliding, skipping, fluttering around our ears in soundless wonder. We were standing so still, shoulder to shoulder, stalled as traffic on bridges, every breath held and every eye open, waiting for the weightless blessing of tiny insects."[...] "And for that briefest of moments, faces and palms to the sky, we did not ask why. The chatter in our heads fell silent, the endless ticker tape of voice-over narrative, always prying things apart for cause and effect, sign and symbol, some kind of useful meaning or value or portent - it all just stopped, and the butterflies came to us." (17-18) And here you can download commentary from Shaun Tan himself. https://www.allenandunwin.com/browse/...

  17. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    This is a very significant book. It is dark and often difficult to read, especially the shark, pig and fish chapters. But its message about the interconnectedness between humans and animals is incredibly important. Animals have largely not been respected by humans. They have been abused, tortured, imprisoned and murdered throughout recorded history. And yet, humans still consider themselves the enlightened, superior beings. Tan cleverly exposes the truth. He does this through a beautiful blend o This is a very significant book. It is dark and often difficult to read, especially the shark, pig and fish chapters. But its message about the interconnectedness between humans and animals is incredibly important. Animals have largely not been respected by humans. They have been abused, tortured, imprisoned and murdered throughout recorded history. And yet, humans still consider themselves the enlightened, superior beings. Tan cleverly exposes the truth. He does this through a beautiful blend of prose and poetry- economical and powerful. His trademark illustrations are haunting and add to the poignancy of the text. Of all the chapters I found the pigeon one the most hopeful and that is primarily because it poses the theory that if humans disappeared, nature and animals in particular would prevail. It is not an easy read; however Tan forces us to engage in questions regarding our relationship with the animals we share this world with that need to be addressed and he does so in his inimitable way, with intelligence and grace.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Frank-Intergalactic Bookdragon

    "But explanation is a luxury we can't afford these days, and reality doesn't care for it, being far too busy following its own unknowable course." By far one of the most beautiful and meaningful books I've read in a long time. The prose almost reads like poetry (in one story it's literal poetry) and the illustrations are breathtaking, I want to draw this well! Because it's anthology I found some of the stories forgettable but I like how each one had something interesting to say about humanity. My "But explanation is a luxury we can't afford these days, and reality doesn't care for it, being far too busy following its own unknowable course." By far one of the most beautiful and meaningful books I've read in a long time. The prose almost reads like poetry (in one story it's literal poetry) and the illustrations are breathtaking, I want to draw this well! Because it's anthology I found some of the stories forgettable but I like how each one had something interesting to say about humanity. My favorite stories were the dog, bear, and bee ones but I loved all the art pretty equally. I'd recommend this to anyone looking for something awe-inspiring!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Suzan Jackson

    This wholly unique illustrated collection of short stories defies categorization, combining gorgeous color-saturated paintings with surreal, fantastical stories set in cities and involving animals and humans. Beautiful, bizarre, and thought-provoking. Read my full review at: https://bookbybook.blogspot.com/2019/... This wholly unique illustrated collection of short stories defies categorization, combining gorgeous color-saturated paintings with surreal, fantastical stories set in cities and involving animals and humans. Beautiful, bizarre, and thought-provoking. Read my full review at: https://bookbybook.blogspot.com/2019/...

  20. 5 out of 5

    Ely

    I swear Shaun Tan is a genius. Everything in here was beautiful, but I think my favourites were the fox, bee and butterflies.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Riana (RianaInTheStacks)

    Shaun Tan’s Tales from the Inner City is a wonderful compilation of short stories, poetry, and art. There is at least one original art piece from Tan illustrating each tale, regardless of format. Each story takes a focus on a different animal and the relationship humanity has, and has had, with that species. The author draws on both humanity’s interactions and comparisons with these animals in exploring our relationship. Tan beautifully employs magical realism in his painting of modern life Shaun Tan’s Tales from the Inner City is a wonderful compilation of short stories, poetry, and art. There is at least one original art piece from Tan illustrating each tale, regardless of format. Each story takes a focus on a different animal and the relationship humanity has, and has had, with that species. The author draws on both humanity’s interactions and comparisons with these animals in exploring our relationship. Tan beautifully employs magical realism in his painting of modern life blending with magical, fantastical elements to illustrate the profound thoughts which arise with this topic. ”In the cool brain of a crocodile the city is just a waiting room: the biggest of all waiting rooms, rising up through an age with which they have no account, no appointment, and to which they owe no attention.” The book begins with a “Table” of contents that is set up with an illustration of each animal that appears and on what page their story begins. This same image shows up at the beginning of each story, already giving you a visual clue of which animal this story is going to feature. At the end of each tale, or at times dispersed throughout poems, are such vividly detailed and expressive illustrations that they not only drive home the thoughts that have been swimming around while reading, but add something even more in the finality of each tale. I read through this one fairly quickly, nearly finishing it in one sitting. However, I can see how it would also work well as a book that you pick up and read one or two tales from every now and then. Or, a book that you keep coming back to, re reading for the beauty of it and also to pick up on new thoughts. I have already gone back and re read a few of them myself. ”And for the briefest of moments, faces and palms to the sky, we did not ask why. The chatter in our heads fell silent, the endless ticker tape of voice-over narrative, always prying things apart for cause and effect, sign and symbol, some kind of useful meaning or value or portent— it all just stopped, and the butterflies came to us.” At times depressing, yet hopeful in turns, in its honesty on our relationship with other animals, Shaun Tan’s Tales from the Inner City is sure to evoke many and varying emotions. And perhaps above all else, it reminds to look for our reflections in and impressions upon other living creatures and our environments. ”Ours was not the only fiscal system in the world, it turned out. And worse, our debt was severe beyond reckoning. And worse than worse, all the capital we had accrued throughout history was a collective figment is the human imagination: every asset, stock, and dollar. We owned nothing.”

  22. 4 out of 5

    Lex

    The art in this was honestly stunning. Evocative of what I can't entirely be sure, but it was a little spooky and off in a way that was beyond beautiful. The short stories were my favorite type of magical realism where things are just about the same but a little bit off, only in a way that changes absolutely everything. "Who can now imagine our city without these beautiful creatures? We would be so sad if they ever went away, leaving us all alone with our small ideas about love." "The mayor search The art in this was honestly stunning. Evocative of what I can't entirely be sure, but it was a little spooky and off in a way that was beyond beautiful. The short stories were my favorite type of magical realism where things are just about the same but a little bit off, only in a way that changes absolutely everything. "Who can now imagine our city without these beautiful creatures? We would be so sad if they ever went away, leaving us all alone with our small ideas about love." "The mayor searched for a word that meant both disgust and delight, but couldn't find one. It didn't matter." "Right from the start it was clear Tugboat wasn't just any cat. He was the tiny vessel shunting them steadfastly through the dark sea, one day at a time. And now he was dead...sort of." "I have learned to love crises for this reason, how they make us pull together and forget all our separateness and sadness; this was the second great gift of the moonfish." "a benediction of transcendental caviar" "There was a hum of muddy eternity" "How I'd love to just get some decent rest, ground my ions to something other than carpet or steel, return to that greatly turning earth all living things were born to." "There's nothing here that I haven't already seen a thousand times before, and a fox has no appetite for shame."

  23. 4 out of 5

    Mairi

    And worse than worse, all the capital we had accrued throughout history was a collective figment of the human imagination: every asset, stock and dollar. We owned nothing. The bears asked us to relinquish our hold on all that never belonged to us in the first place. Well, this we simply could not do. Bears with lawyers, fish that now swim in the sky, and an office block filled with alligators... Tales from the Inner City was an impulse purchase from a book shop after I was so taken aback by the be And worse than worse, all the capital we had accrued throughout history was a collective figment of the human imagination: every asset, stock and dollar. We owned nothing. The bears asked us to relinquish our hold on all that never belonged to us in the first place. Well, this we simply could not do. Bears with lawyers, fish that now swim in the sky, and an office block filled with alligators... Tales from the Inner City was an impulse purchase from a book shop after I was so taken aback by the beautiful cover illustration. Sometimes I buy books which look to be "children's books" in the thought that I'll either save it on a shelf one day for my own future generations or give it away as a 1st birthday gift. Tales from the Inner City isn't really for children at all though - it's about the relationship between humans and animals. I think, more specifically, about urban sprawl and what the place of various animals are within it. Often fantasy, often more realistic than life. It's a humbling book I've found myself quoting regularly. ... And so we shot the bears.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Angie

    I remember reading The Arrival a long time ago and I love the artwork, but this book is even better. Again, Tan's artwork is amazing. He has that painterly style I would kill for where his subject can be a gray, dismal city but his brush strokes and dabs and dots of color that shine through so beautifully! His writing is also unique and fun to read, but with sad undertones as each tale has to do with an animal, and it never seems to go well for said animal, and the human(s) doesn't seem to reali I remember reading The Arrival a long time ago and I love the artwork, but this book is even better. Again, Tan's artwork is amazing. He has that painterly style I would kill for where his subject can be a gray, dismal city but his brush strokes and dabs and dots of color that shine through so beautifully! His writing is also unique and fun to read, but with sad undertones as each tale has to do with an animal, and it never seems to go well for said animal, and the human(s) doesn't seem to realize this until it's too late. So if you're looking for an illustrated book of short stories for ages 12+ I would totally recommend this one.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Tom Evans

    I now know why Shaun Tan is so critically acclaimed, an incredible collection of stories complemented by outstanding illustrations.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Too Much To Swallow (I am fox!)

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I am fox! I go wherever I go! I do whatever I do! Half the charm of this is lost in the ebook version. Get out of the house. Walk the slow journey to the bookstore. Buy the book. Read the book. Love the book. Marvel. Marvel. Marvel.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Maxwell Thomas

    Quite dreamlike and surreal. The advanced reader's copy we received at the bookstore had only a handful of stories, however they were unique and intriguing and the illustrations were phenomenal. I look forward to getting a chance to read the full thing. Quite dreamlike and surreal. The advanced reader's copy we received at the bookstore had only a handful of stories, however they were unique and intriguing and the illustrations were phenomenal. I look forward to getting a chance to read the full thing.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen

    I liked the story about man-and-dog, and the one about the yak. My favorite pictures were the orca in the sky, and the one with the snails - I could almost swear I heard the buzzing of the sodium lamp.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Samson

    A darker, more adult "tales from Outer Suburbia." It was surreal and long, most of the stories were like dreams, or, nightmares. A few stories stood out though, my favourites were the bee, the dog, the butterfly, the orca, and the snail. (also, this is an adult book, no matter what it looks like) A darker, more adult "tales from Outer Suburbia." It was surreal and long, most of the stories were like dreams, or, nightmares. A few stories stood out though, my favourites were the bee, the dog, the butterfly, the orca, and the snail. (also, this is an adult book, no matter what it looks like)

  30. 5 out of 5

    Donna

    Short stories about human interactions with animals, with absolutely gorgeous artwork about each Shaun Tan is amazing. The stories here ranged from poetry, to flash fiction-length, to short stories and they all had an impact. My favorites were Bear, Dog, Rhinoceros, Hippo, and Crocodile. But the artwork page for orca and fox both blew me away just with the picture alone. I've only ever read Shaun Tan's picture books or graphic novels before this so it's nice to learn that he's talented in writing Short stories about human interactions with animals, with absolutely gorgeous artwork about each Shaun Tan is amazing. The stories here ranged from poetry, to flash fiction-length, to short stories and they all had an impact. My favorites were Bear, Dog, Rhinoceros, Hippo, and Crocodile. But the artwork page for orca and fox both blew me away just with the picture alone. I've only ever read Shaun Tan's picture books or graphic novels before this so it's nice to learn that he's talented in writing prose as well as artwork. If you like the pictures in this, give 'The Arrival' and 'Cicada' a try.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...