Russell Hoban, author, died yesterday. The work of his I was most familiar with was “The Mouse and His Child,” a children’s book–sort of. It is a beautiful and emotional work, considered a children’s book because it follows the journey of a windup mouse and his son, but the themes it touches on are complex and mature. It was made into a strange and wonderful animated movie, which definitely retains some of the strangeness of the book.
The linked article in the Guardian says:
Death, Hoban predicted in 2002, would “be a good career move”. “People will say, ‘yes, Hoban, he seems an interesting writer, let’s look at him again’,” he said.
And in “The Mouse and His Child,” there is this passage, spoken by the father mouse after a series of ordeals:
We aren’t toys anymore,” said the father. “Toys are to be played with, and we aren’t. We have endured all that Frog foretold–the painful spring, the shattering fall, and more. Now we have come to that place where the scattering is regathered.
If you’re not familiar with his work, then yes, Hoban, he’s an interesting writer. Let’s look at him again.