Topsy Turvy World: surreal kids' picture book, now out in the USA

Back in May, I reviewed Topsy Turvy World, a beautiful, wordless surreal picture book from London's Flying Eye. At the time, it was only available in the UK, but it's out in the USA as of today! Here's my original review:

TOPSY TURVY WORLD is one of the new titles from Flying Eye, the kids' imprint of London's wonderful NoBrow publishing. Like the rest of the line (recently reviewed titles include Welcome to Your Awesome Robot, Monsters and Legends and Akissi), Topsy Turvy World is brilliantly conceived, beautifully executed, and not quite like anything else in kids' publishing today.

Topsy Turvy World is a wordless collection of surreal paintings presented as two-page spreads. Though there's no story per se, the paintings do progress from the merely whimsical to the outright bizarre. The artist, Atak (a pseudonym for the German illustrator Hans-Georg Barber) manages to make things weirder and weirder without even hinting at horror, which is a great trick and makes this a perfect picture book for small kids like my daughter, who experienced unvarnished delight as we snuggled up at bedtime, working our way through all the strange and funny situations depicted on each page (the final spread is a real crescendo!).

The nice folks at Flying Eye were kind enough to supply some samples to go with this review -- check them out below the jump!


Topsy Turvy World [Amazon]


  1. Love this book, and its publisher – have just bought Monsters and Legends.

    But I am here to register my dismay (pointlessly) at your use (end of 2nd para of original review, quoted here) of the word ‘crescendo’ in a way that I, and all musicians I know, bridle at. 

    And trying to reassert its meaning of ‘growing in intensity’.

    1. At least he didn’t use “epicenter” as a synonym for “center.“ That shit drives me up the wall, and I’m not even a seismologist or anything.

Comments are closed.