The eccentric talent of the legendary Mervyn Peake figures prominently in FIGURES OF SPEECH, a playful series of drawings that challenge the reader to guess what familiar saying each picture portrays.
"We give no table of contents here, for to do so would spoil your pleasure," wrote author-illustrator Mervyn Peake when this quirky book was first published in 1939. "Each drawing represents a particular Figure of Speech." Following were twenty-nine drawings, identified only by number: a couple with their noses on fire; a gentleman cutting pages from a book; a tropical explorer resting his heels inside water glasses. Revealed in a key at the end were the "figures of speech" the drawings portrayed (in this case, "burning their bridges," "cutting a long story short," and, of course, "cooling his heels").
Now this idiosyncratic volume has been lovingly reissued, its original black-and-white drawings set against colorful panels. Whether enjoyed simply for its witty, intriguing, and masterly pictures or used as a game book with family or friends, Figures of Speech will delight devoted followers of Mervyn Peake and everyone else who loves visual puns.