Long Ago a Moonboat
Christopher Carroll ~ Silverdog Press, 1974
I know I promised Halloween inspired picks this week, but I keep getting distracted. First off, I know absolutely nothing about this book or the author/illustrator. It's totally 70s though with gorgeous black and white ink drawings and matching quirky text. I have vague memories of it on my parent's bookshelf when I was young and suspect it's one of those books that can technically be called a children's book, but is, in fact, not for children at all.
The title houses three tales: The Message of Queen Clausetta (a bizarre little story of an AWOL queen and the chaos of kingdom that ensues), Stories for Little Elmo (a selection of three tales and a drawing of recent likeness) ~ Ennui in the Nursery, At Court, and L'Amour, and finally, the namesake, Long Ago a Moonboat. The story actually begins on the cover.
Long Ago a Moonboat was blown through the dark night toward a range of razor-sharp mountains. The ship crashed on the highest pinnacle and over the years was transformed into a lofty city known as the Kingdom of Roon. In this kingdom lived the group of very strange people known as Macaroons.
The tale goes on and we meet the king, who likes to throw parties and send out "movable-toe-and-finger-counting machines" to search for other life forms. When the strange Macaroons are discovered by a group of anthropologists from The New World (who happen to be on a scouting mission looking for the missing bones of the ape-man), the anthropologists announce their discovery and the royal family of Macaroons are paraded around for all The New World to see. This totally freaks the king et al out and they return to their moonboat city and set sail away in a giant storm, relocating on another peak, leaving The New World to believe the civilization is lost forever.
Yes, it is a mouthful.
If anyone knows anything about this book or its maker or has memories of it, please drop me a note. It's kinda like a mystery within a mystery within a mystery. Which is kinda spooky, right? BOO!