You know how sometimes you find a small treasure, a very little thing that no one else in the world seems to know about and you think how is it that I’ve never heard of this and any minute now everyone’s going to be telling me how they’ve heard of this and how cool it is and how I’m so behind everyone else, only they never do and it stays seemingly hidden and you keep it all to yourself for years until one day when you decide to write a blog post on it and thereby reveal it to your many (okay 20) followers?
Ladies and gentlemans, let me present to you The Boy Who Kicked Pigs by Tom Baker.
The Boy Who Kicked Pigs
This is the story of Robert Caligari – a thoroughly evil 13-year-old who gets his kicks from kicking pigs. After a humiliating episode with a bacon butty, Robert realizes just how much he loathes the human race – and his revenge is truly terrible.
The Boy Who Kicked Pigs is the weirdest, cruellest, oddest little book I own and have read. It’s written by Tom (forever Dr Who, lately Little Britain) Baker and illustrated by David Roberts. It’s billed as a child’s tale, though I defy anyone to give this to a child and then not be woken up every night for the following month by said child and their nightmares.
Or, alternatively, not then be a little perturbed that your child enjoyed this book.
The story is bizarre and the illustrations are gorgeously, gothically odd and gruesome. It’s subtitled “A Grotesque Masterpiece” and it really REALLY is. Imagine Lemony Snicket and Roald Dahl and Spike Milligan got together and then took a lot of drugs and then said “You know people? I don’t really like people much. Especially mean little boys” and then wrote a story about it. Weird.
And very, very good. And funny. And slightly sickmaking sometimes (okay, lots). How, Mr Baker, did you ever manage to convince your publisher to release this? Bravo to you.
If, like me, you’ve been lucky enough to find yourself a copy of this small gem bravo to you also. If not, well… the world probably seems so much more simple and sunny to you…
P.S. If you’re reading this, please do comment. I’d love to know if a) you also have experienced this book, or b) you haven’t so I’ve just revealed my secret to you!