âThe Abridged Field Guide to North American House Creaturesâ
Presented by Jaime McGuigan
Troy Book Makers
72 pages, $19.95
Fortunately, grandmothers follow a long tradition of being the first in a family to bestow grandchildren their first book. This parental tradition fulfills its secret goals of opening worlds to their older grand boys and grand girls. They also inspire the secrets of rhyme or reason and love of the written word â poetry itself.
This season an extraordinarily creative book has surfaced in the Monadnock Region â âThe Abridged Field Guide to North American House Creatures,â presented by Jaime McGuigan of Marlow and from Holly and Willard Williams of The Toadstool Bookshop.
Although McGuigan, author and illustrator, may reveal a firsthand predilection to live her life young at heart, she does remain thoroughly watchful.
She also writes of her extraordinary life as an author/illustrator, and botanist-turned-chemist, wishing she never had to sleep.
She lives, she writes, âin a rattling, clattering old farmhouse in New Hampshire, surrounded by lovely but unruly gardens.â There, she says, âshe has taken up with two very stubborn dogs, two terribly moody cats and one perfectly lovely husband.â
She points out that âcertain tiny experiences in this house of hers that have accumulated over the years.â For instance, former residents include a childrenâs etiquette writer from the 17th century. McGuigan says she also encountered a lovelorn and slightly mad inventor from the late 1800s and a female oil company geologist who went on to become a champion of the environmental movement in the 1970s.
McGuigan dedicates her book âTo Micah. Youâll do, Always.â And: âTo my mom, for having to raise a daughter who didnât actually realize why until finishing my first book at 40 years old. To Kristin Stephanie, Emily and Marlon.â
McGuigan explains she doesnât exactly see faces from the past in the wood grain of the walls when goes through the rooms. But âThe Abridged Field Guide to North American House Creaturesâ contains her breakthrough research of certain visiting house creatures, which have finally been catalogued with astonishing ingenuity.
Her exotic illustrations and narratives are designed, evidently, to save humanity from itself before McGuigan gets her turn. Nevertheless, she has researched these house visitors, and includes a few samples of the following curious little-known house visitor species:
The Thing in the Corner of Your eye. Oculosangui sanctus
The Thing in the Corner That Cats Stare at. Solum attushoroma
The Thing That Lives in the Junk Drawer. Habitatoar quiciconportant
The Thing That Clogs the Sink Drain. Ehauricbat implete
The Thing that Lives in the Oven. Dracoa. dustusfornax
The Other Thing That Lives down the Drain. Aurugo spatiator
The Thing That Eats One sock. Pedue comedenti
The Thing That lives in the Wood Grain. Lignum vivusgtano
The Thing That Makes the Doors Creak. Aerugino ausaut Aerugino causautfaciam
The Thing That Lives in the Closet. Cathedrariu monsttum
The Thing that Lives Under the Bed. Blua subtectuque
The Thing That Ties Knots in Your Hair. Ambagesque textor