'I blame the pencil. I hadn't meant to do it. I wasn't thinking. It just happened that way.'
In March 2020, as lockdowns were imposed around the world, author and illustrator Edward Carey published a sketch on social media with a plan to keep posting a drawing a day from his family home in Austin, Texas, until life returned to normal. One hundred and fifty pencil stubs later, he was still drawing.
Carey's hand moved with world events, chronicling pandemic and politics. It reached into the past, taking inspiration from history, and escaped grim reality through flights of vivid imagination and studies of the natural world. The drawings became a way of charting time, of moving forward, and maintaining connection at a time of isolation.
This remarkable collection of words and drawings from the acclaimed author of Little and The Swallowed Man charts a tumultuous year in pencil, finding beauty amid the horror of extraordinary times.
Praise for Edward Carey
‘Startlingly original’ The Times
‘Don’t miss this eccentric charmer’ @MargaretAtwood
‘A playful writer whose charming sentences are works of careful craftsmanship’ Washington Post
‘Inspired’ New York Times
‘[The Swallowed Man is] a marvellous feat of storytelling that dives deep into the madness accompanying solitude and creativity’ Daily Mail
‘Haunting … beautiful … [The Swallowed Man] offers much in which to luxuriate’ Sunday Times