The Circus is Coming
a picture parade by Hilary Knight/ published 1978 by Golden Press
Circus was recently reissued, and I saw the new version at The Red Balloon, and decided to buy a vintage copy for myself. This book is totally lavish, a little sexualized and almost indescribable. It's awesome! There is very minimal text, but the reason to buy here is the pictures. Each two-page spread illustrates a circus float with different themes: clowns, acrobats, the Arctic, pirates, cowboys and Indians, monkeys, etc... The text is simple but tells a story. Literally, the pictures are worth a thousand words (and reads!)
Snarling and spitting tigers make me shiver.
But cats can be gentle too.
Silly, silly apes in wigs...
I laugh so hard my sides hurt.
Brrr. A frosty float all covered with ice...
...and Eskimos and penguins and furry seal babies.
Best known for his work on Eloise, there are undertones of Knight's second life here and the pictures are utterly fascinating. Those who really get into it, can even buy signed prints of some of the artwork here.