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Michael Garland

Icarus Swinebuckle

YEAR: 2000

COUNTRY: United States of America

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Title of the work

Icarus Swinebuckle

Country of the First Edition

Country/countries of popularity

Worldwide

Original Language

English

First Edition Date

2000

First Edition Details

Michael Garland, Icarus Swinebuckle. Park Ridge, Illinois: Albert Whitman & Company, 2000, 32 pp.

ISBN

0807534951

Awards

Parents’ Choice Foundation Silver Award for Picture Book in 2000.

Genre

Alternative histories (Fiction)
Fantasy fiction
Historical fiction
Humor
Picture book

Target Audience

Children

Cover

Missing cover

We are still trying to obtain permission for posting the original cover.


Author of the Entry:

Elizabeth Hale, University of New England, ehale@une.edu.au

Peer-reviewer of the Entry:

Miriam Riverlea, University of New England, mriverlea@gmail.com

Lisa Maurice, Bar-Ilan University, lisa.maurice@biu.ac.il

Male portrait

Michael Garland , b. 1952
(Author, Illustrator)

Michael Garland was born in New York City in 1952, and lives and works in Patterson, New York. He studied for a Bachelor of Fine Arts at the Pratt Institute He is an artist, illustrator and author of picture books, including the “Miss Smith” series of educational fantasy stories (Miss Smith’s Incredible Storybook; Miss Smith and the Haunted Library; Miss Smith Under the Ocean), a number of Christmas-related picture books (The Mouse Before Christmas; Christmas Magic; Oh What a Christmas), board books for very young readers, and whimsical stories such as King Puck, and Icarus Swinebuckle. Garland has written or illustrated over thirty picture books, and illustrated for celebrity authors such as the singer Gloria Estefan (the Noelle the Bulldog series), and the crime novelist James Patterson (SantaKid). Garland’s style is highly coloured and mixes whimsy with a hyperrealistic almost three-dimensional quality.


Official website (accessed: July 3, 2018).

 

Bio prepared by Elizabeth Hale, University of New England, ehale@une.edu.au


Adaptations

An ipad app of Icarus Swinebuckle was developed by Giant Atoms in 2011. It features animation of opening titles, and read-aloud and recording functions.

Summary

Set in East London in the late eighteenth century, Icarus Swinebuckle is a picture book about an eponymous pig who wishes to fly, and who proves everyone wrong by building himself a set of wings. The characters are animals familiar in Europe (pigs, sheep, goats, cows, wolves), intertwining the English phrase ‘pigs might fly’ (an expression of impossibility) with the myth of Icarus, who flew too close to the sun and melted his waxen wings.

Icarus Swinebuckle is a portly cobbler with big dreams of flying. His wife does not share his dreams, but his son Robin does. He is working on a pair of wings, made of feathers attached with wax. This distracts him from his work as a cobbler. He is late with shoes for his bovine clients, Lady Holstein and her daughter); he is late with rent for his vulpine landlord, Mr Gnawbone. He is the talk of the town, and on the day he tests the wings, a crowd gathers. Icarus flies into the air, to their astonishment, and soars through the clouds and close to the sun. The wax on his feathers melts, and Icarus tumbles to earth. Though he is chastened, the crowds admire his attempt; his wife kisses him, his son praises him. Icarus begins designing a new flying machine to take him to the moon.

Analysis

A humorous adaptation of the myth of Icarus for young readers, Icarus Swinebuckle connects the phrase ‘pigs might fly’ (an expression of impossibility) with the myth of Icarus into a picture book for young readers with a message of sticking to one’s dreams, and not giving up. The illustrations are highly-coloured and meticulous, using a mixture of pencil and digital colouring to convey a three-dimensional effect. Anthropomorphic animals in eighteenth-century dress make up the cast of characters, and the story is set in the late eighteenth-century, in a nod to the period of the Enlightenment and its emphasis on scientific experimentation. Garland conflates Daedalus and Icarus into one character: Icarus Swinebuckle. Swinebuckle is a humble dreamer, a cobbler with aspirations above his station (and in his dress is not unlike the American Founding Father, Benjamin Franklin). His flight follows a similar pattern to that of the mythical Icarus; flying too close to the sun melts the wax holding the feathers together, and he falls through the clouds into the river, where he is rescued.


Yellow cloud
Leaf pattern
Leaf pattern

Title of the work

Icarus Swinebuckle

Country of the First Edition

Country/countries of popularity

Worldwide

Original Language

English

First Edition Date

2000

First Edition Details

Michael Garland, Icarus Swinebuckle. Park Ridge, Illinois: Albert Whitman & Company, 2000, 32 pp.

ISBN

0807534951

Awards

Parents’ Choice Foundation Silver Award for Picture Book in 2000.

Genre

Alternative histories (Fiction)
Fantasy fiction
Historical fiction
Humor
Picture book

Target Audience

Children

Cover

Missing cover

We are still trying to obtain permission for posting the original cover.


Author of the Entry:

Elizabeth Hale, University of New England, ehale@une.edu.au

Peer-reviewer of the Entry:

Miriam Riverlea, University of New England, mriverlea@gmail.com

Lisa Maurice, Bar-Ilan University, lisa.maurice@biu.ac.il

Male portrait

Michael Garland (Author, Illustrator)

Michael Garland was born in New York City in 1952, and lives and works in Patterson, New York. He studied for a Bachelor of Fine Arts at the Pratt Institute He is an artist, illustrator and author of picture books, including the “Miss Smith” series of educational fantasy stories (Miss Smith’s Incredible Storybook; Miss Smith and the Haunted Library; Miss Smith Under the Ocean), a number of Christmas-related picture books (The Mouse Before Christmas; Christmas Magic; Oh What a Christmas), board books for very young readers, and whimsical stories such as King Puck, and Icarus Swinebuckle. Garland has written or illustrated over thirty picture books, and illustrated for celebrity authors such as the singer Gloria Estefan (the Noelle the Bulldog series), and the crime novelist James Patterson (SantaKid). Garland’s style is highly coloured and mixes whimsy with a hyperrealistic almost three-dimensional quality.


Official website (accessed: July 3, 2018).

 

Bio prepared by Elizabeth Hale, University of New England, ehale@une.edu.au


Adaptations

An ipad app of Icarus Swinebuckle was developed by Giant Atoms in 2011. It features animation of opening titles, and read-aloud and recording functions.

Summary

Set in East London in the late eighteenth century, Icarus Swinebuckle is a picture book about an eponymous pig who wishes to fly, and who proves everyone wrong by building himself a set of wings. The characters are animals familiar in Europe (pigs, sheep, goats, cows, wolves), intertwining the English phrase ‘pigs might fly’ (an expression of impossibility) with the myth of Icarus, who flew too close to the sun and melted his waxen wings.

Icarus Swinebuckle is a portly cobbler with big dreams of flying. His wife does not share his dreams, but his son Robin does. He is working on a pair of wings, made of feathers attached with wax. This distracts him from his work as a cobbler. He is late with shoes for his bovine clients, Lady Holstein and her daughter); he is late with rent for his vulpine landlord, Mr Gnawbone. He is the talk of the town, and on the day he tests the wings, a crowd gathers. Icarus flies into the air, to their astonishment, and soars through the clouds and close to the sun. The wax on his feathers melts, and Icarus tumbles to earth. Though he is chastened, the crowds admire his attempt; his wife kisses him, his son praises him. Icarus begins designing a new flying machine to take him to the moon.

Analysis

A humorous adaptation of the myth of Icarus for young readers, Icarus Swinebuckle connects the phrase ‘pigs might fly’ (an expression of impossibility) with the myth of Icarus into a picture book for young readers with a message of sticking to one’s dreams, and not giving up. The illustrations are highly-coloured and meticulous, using a mixture of pencil and digital colouring to convey a three-dimensional effect. Anthropomorphic animals in eighteenth-century dress make up the cast of characters, and the story is set in the late eighteenth-century, in a nod to the period of the Enlightenment and its emphasis on scientific experimentation. Garland conflates Daedalus and Icarus into one character: Icarus Swinebuckle. Swinebuckle is a humble dreamer, a cobbler with aspirations above his station (and in his dress is not unlike the American Founding Father, Benjamin Franklin). His flight follows a similar pattern to that of the mythical Icarus; flying too close to the sun melts the wax holding the feathers together, and he falls through the clouds into the river, where he is rescued.


Yellow cloud