Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Encounter on the High Seas featuring Roundi Doundi, Chim Cham, Axel, Wallie, Bobo, Rhinie, Emile, and GiGi: Roundi Doundi Gang

Encounter on the High Seas
Edward Azmon ~ based on the characters created by Xenia Azmon ~ A Lion Book, 1971


OK, people. I need help with a mystery. This book has been floating around our shelves for years, and I have no idea what its deal is. I can find no reference to what it is online other than offers to buy on book sale sites. It seems as if it's part of a series (another book online is entitled A Hunt in the Jungle), and the pictures look like they might have been extracted from some sort of film or television animation. No? If anyone knows what the deal is with this book, please comment right away and end the wondering.

That said...

In the far north, where there is nothing but ice and water, lives Wally the Walrus. Wally loves to spend his days fishing and painting his white and blue world. One day Wally runs out of white paint. How can he paint without white? Hopping into his ice car, he hurries to the paint store.

One store after another is closed. The farther he floats away, the hotter it gets and soon his car begins to melt. Lost adrift, he's picked up by an admiral-like crocodile who mistakes him for his friend Bobo the Elephant and soon Wally is painting the reptile's portrait and the next thing they know they are docked and the entire Roundi Doundi Gang is waiting for them and they all fall in love with Wally and climb into Chim Cham's car and head to a party where Wally paints everyone's picture and is gifted with the biggest tube of white paint you ever saw and then he goes home. The end. Whew.

I originally bought this book at Goodwill because of the bright 70s palette, but now the whole thing confounds me to no end. It is only really half a story. It reads like a movie tie-in. They introduce the characters in a tone that makes it sound as if I should know them, and should I know them? If I should know them, why is there no memory of them on the all-knowing Internet? On the cover Wallie's name is spelled Wallie but in the story Wallie's name is spelled Wally. The design and color leads me to believe that the author was massively influenced by the Missoni house of fashion.

Nothing makes sense and yet, I can't look away.

Would someone make this pain in my brain go away and tell me what this book is already!?!


—————

Read along on Facebook, tumblr, Twitter, and Etsy!

10 comments:

Julia's Bookbag said...

Holy moly now I want to know too! That is the longest and coolest title I have ever seen!

deb-bee-licious said...

I found this post about the other book, A Hunt in the Jungle. Please excuse the blog site as it's creepy in and of itself however the blogger's page by page analysis, of how whacked the story is, is hysterical and deserving of a blog nod.

http://plasticpumpkins.blogspot.com/2007/09/pass-roundi-doundi-on-left-hand-side.html

One commenter on the post states the following: "The author's bio in "Hunt in the Jungle" says that Xenia Azmon, a toy designer and first prize winner in a national toy competition in Israel, actually created the Roundi Doundi characters so who knows what sort of cool Roundi Doundi jungle is out there! They may be the Israeli Care Bears of the 1970's!"

I think the Azmons must have smoked quite a bit of opium during the 60s/70s and these strange stories and characters are the byproduct. IMHO

B. Streetman said...

Thanks deb-bee! awesome insight....

Jil Casey said...

Glad the mystery is solved - but talk about two lame stories! I did enjoy plastic pumpkins critique.

B. Streetman said...

hahahahahahaha.... i swear it looks and reads like those terrible books people make using stills from a TV show.

Peter said...

Burgin,

I did some digging, too. It turns out that Edward Azmon is a pseudonym for Edward Grinberg. (See: Catalog of Copyright Entries. Third Series: 1972: July-December By Library of Congress).

Edward Grinberg has a lengthy entry on French wikipedia. If you don't speak French, no worries! As translated by Google, Grinberg was (is?) an architect and urban planner, and he designed the "DoMobile system."

What's the "DoMobile system?" Well, as translated by Google from the French: "Based on the belief that this symbiosis is essential for the vitality of the city, the system DoMobile proposes the creation of a new type of car: DoMobile, architectural feature mobile, fully integrated into the urban fabric."

If that's not clear, then perhaps this description will elucidate:

"In ranging beyond the usual half-measures, the system DoMobile takes us to the heart of a projection: the car-balcony, car-bow window, the voituire-bench, stackable car ... A representation free, creating a new field of possibilities. "

(Communiqué de presse de l'exposition du système Domobile au Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris,mars,1994) (Press release of the exposure system DoMobile the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, March 1994)

As yet no insight into Xenia Azmon the toy maker or whether Chim Cham preferred a DoMobile to a Peugeot.

Antmusic said...

I KNOW I've seen these characters before... Like on Pinwheel or Today's Special. Or I may have even had this particular book. I had an immediate recognition of them. I'll do some research later...because me wanty this book BAD!

hopita said...

I know nothing more about this book than you do, but I wanted to say that it was one of my absolute FAVORITE books when I was a child. I never knew that it had a companion book, and now I'm definitely going to have to track that down!

Jeff said...

These were my favorite books growing up but no one in my family knows where they came from. Happily, my mom still has a Hunt in the Jungle and Encounter on the High Seas on her bookshelves!

An additional great mystery for me is that the Roundi Doundi Gang member on the top left of the cover, the one who looks like a wizard, doesn't appear in either book.

What's the deal with that guy?

Jeff said...

These were my favorite books growing up but no one in my family knows where they came from. Happily, my mom still has a Hunt in the Jungle and Encounter on the High Seas on her bookshelves!

An additional great mystery for me is that the Roundi Doundi Gang member on the top left of the cover, the one who looks like a wizard, doesn't appear in either book.

What's the deal with that guy?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...