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Scary picture books

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I can't remember where or why but I was recently questioning the lack of scary stuff in picture books, then today I came across this list of what seems to be some terrifying kids' books! I would love to read some of them. I wonder if they're as scary as they look...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/gallery/2012/may/30/terrifying-french-childrens-books-in-pictures?utm_source=Publishers+Weekly's+Children's+Bookshelf&utm_campaign=1c54733d2e-UA-15906914-1&utm_medium=email#/?picture=390846405&index=9
#1 - June 07, 2012, 04:39 PM

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They do seem scary...some look interesting.....the artwork is Tim Burton-y....don't know about reading a near abduction picture book at bedtime when the creepy ghoulies are gathering under the bed...
#2 - June 07, 2012, 04:54 PM

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Truly terrifying....but commentary was hilarious. I agree -- now I'm intrigued to read them and see what the real deal is. Sadly, I need English translations because I have no French!
#3 - June 07, 2012, 04:59 PM

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Terrifying is an understatement. Some of those stories would keep ME up at night! :faint

Rue
#4 - June 07, 2012, 05:24 PM
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Oh my gosh. If only I could remember my college French. I agree with Rue - they'd give ME nightmares.
#5 - June 07, 2012, 06:20 PM

OMG! Those really are bizarre!
#6 - June 07, 2012, 07:03 PM

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Not to mention hilarious (in a twisted sort of way ;))!
#7 - June 07, 2012, 07:15 PM
AN EYEBALL IN MY GARDEN, Marshall Cavendish Children's Books
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Quite freaky, eh?! I find it fascinating how different picture books are in different cultures. I read quite a lot of original Spanish-language picture books when I was in Chile and they were often just plain strange. Odd endings, or nonsensical plots, and often with illustrations that were also just plain strange. (Strange to me, obviously, maybe they're really everyday to others!) There were no fluffy bear/bunny type stories. None.

Similarly, in the UK there are so many books about farting and poop compared to here in the US. And in Germany there seem to be a lot more 'straight' picture books, ie a little girl learns about vegetables and discovers they are really tasty! (Moral: eat more veg.)

Of course, there are always exceptions to these types of books but I wonder what our different picture book 'culture' says about our adult non-fictional culture... Do the French have less fear of fear? Are the Brits more comfortable with toilet stuff than their US cousins?

Now I wish I was a student again and I could do a thesis on this. Picture books as a representation of popular culture within a society.

Or something like that.
#8 - June 07, 2012, 07:27 PM

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I'm a little bit twisted and I would love to read SO many of those!!! (but OMG, not to my poor kids!!)
#9 - June 07, 2012, 07:36 PM
THIS LITTLE PIGGY (AN OWNER'S MANUAL), Aladdin PIX June 2017 :pigsnort
KUNG POW CHICKEN 1-4, Scholastic 2014 :chicken

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Quote
Now I wish I was a student again and I could do a thesis on this. Picture books as a representation of popular culture within a society.

Or something like that.

Now THAT would be a fascinating read!  Are you sure you don't need another degree? :)
#10 - June 07, 2012, 09:13 PM
AN EYEBALL IN MY GARDEN, Marshall Cavendish Children's Books
www.LauraWynkoop.com

"Head in a Bag"?? Holy cow. Those are really creepy. I actually thought the one with the clown on the front was the most terrifying.

Quote
Similarly, in the UK there are so many books about farting and poop compared to here in the US. And in Germany there seem to be a lot more 'straight' picture books, ie a little girl learns about vegetables and discovers they are really tasty! (Moral: eat more veg.)

Of course, there are always exceptions to these types of books but I wonder what our different picture book 'culture' says about our adult non-fictional culture... Do the French have less fear of fear? Are the Brits more comfortable with toilet stuff than their US cousins?

Now I wish I was a student again and I could do a thesis on this. Picture books as a representation of popular culture within a society.

That is really fascinating! And quite funny. Maybe you should write a little article for the SCBWI Bulletin: "Picture Books Around the World".  :yup

ETA: The more I think about it, maybe those pb's are meant for older readers?
#11 - June 08, 2012, 06:23 AM
« Last Edit: June 09, 2012, 06:04 AM by DianaM »
NED THE KNITTING PIRATE, GRIMELDA series,
CITY SHAPES, DORIS THE BOOKASAURUS, ONE SNOWY DAY, PIZZA PIG, and more...
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LOL
#12 - June 08, 2012, 06:29 AM
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Wow. These range from totally creepy but also intriguing, to just plain disturbing. I love it!

Franzilla -- I wish you could do that thesis, too! If you want to do it just for fun, I'll read it. :) 
#13 - June 28, 2012, 01:44 PM

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Great topic! A country's culture does seem to manifest itself in many of its picture books, doesn't it? Franzilla, as you spoke about the books in Chile I thought about Marquez's books for adults - they are very similar. And let's not start on humor - what people from different cultures find funny, or not.

For us, it adds another dimension to our targeting of submissions.
#14 - June 28, 2012, 03:17 PM
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I don't know much about France, but my daughter minored in French in college. One summer she watched a lot of French movies, and they were all sad, depressing, or pessimistic. One ended with a man sitting in a muddy pit he had spent most of the movie digging. He had lost his wife, his children, his home, his farm, and all hope, but he did have the rain that was pounding him. I suppose some people think this is sophisticated, and I can see where this might jibe with someone as a metaphor for life, but I wasn't impressed. Of course, I'm not sophisticated.

Laurel

#15 - June 28, 2012, 04:45 PM

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I don't know much about France, but my daughter minored in French in college. One summer she watched a lot of French movies, and they were all sad, depressing, or pessimistic. One ended with a man sitting in a muddy pit he had spent most of the movie digging. He had lost his wife, his children, his home, his farm, and all hope, but he did have the rain that was pounding him. I suppose some people think this is sophisticated, and I can see where this might jibe with someone as a metaphor for life, but I wasn't impressed. Of course, I'm not sophisticated.

Laurel



I'm a big fan of rain (I am from England) but that sounds like a step too far, even for me! Ha ha. Maybe I'm not sophisticated either!
#16 - June 28, 2012, 05:46 PM

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