English / India

The fox and the crow

Subramaniam, Manasi (text)
Fox, Culpeo S. (illus.)
Chennai: Karadi Tales, 2014. – [28] p.
ISBN 978-81-8190-302-0

Greed | Flattery | Fable

Aesop’s fable about the cunning fox who flatters the crow (or in some tales it’s a raven) in order to steal his food, is well known the world over and available in many versions and different media. Manasi Subramaniam and artist Culpeo S. Fox explore the tale from an unusual angle.

In this visually stunning retelling of the encounter between the two sly animals, the text is reduced to poetic allusions and comments: ≫Thief! / Bread is best eaten by twilight. / But a pair of eyes glitters dangerously from the dark edges of the woods. / […] Their eyes meet, a challenge is spoken.≪ The words leave ample space for the expressive, dark mixed-media illustrations to move the story forward. The large-format pictures present various close-ups of the two protagonists, and skilfully capture the night-time atmosphere and the tension between fox and crow.

Thanks to the absence of the usual moral, readers can find their own interpretation of the timeless story. (Age: 5+)