MR TIGER GOES WILD is a wonderful book in every way. It is handsome, funny, bold, insightful and surprising.
The endpapers - brown brick wall at the beginning, lush green wilderness at the end – reflect Mr Tiger’s progression from, literally, buttoned-up gentleman tiger to one who knows what it is to be wild. But this simply told story is not simplistic. The happy ending isn’t for Mr Tiger to be totally wild, but instead, having sampled wildness, to reach a happy, flower-shirted, compromise that lets him enjoy the best of both worlds, because ‘Now Mr Tiger felt free to be himself.’
The illustrations are wonderful. Bold and blocky, but full of character and beauty and wit, the pictures are sepia in colouring except for the bits of Mr Tiger that aren’t covered in frock coat and top hat, and those bits are orange. The orange becomes more prevalent the wilder the story becomes. Mr Tiger shocks his repressed animal neighbours by going down on all fours, then ROARING and leaping over rooftops, swimming through a fountain and casting off all clothing before running away to be wild. But the wilderness can be lonely, so Mr Tiger returns to town, and we can see in the pictures that everyone has learned to loosen-up a little.
This book is destined to become a classic, I think. I love it!
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