Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Ant and Bee

I remember being enchanted by Ant and Bee books as a boy. Bee with his suave moustache, goggle eyes and umbrella and Ant with his bowler hat and walking stick. Nowadays, re-reading a couple of them I picked up at a car boot sale, they strike me as rather bizarre, with their naive drawings and odd text, such as:

'Ant and Bee were very frightened of the knife. Bee and Ant said the knife would cut the girl. The girl told them that she wanted the knife to slice up a lemon.'

They have now become quite collectible – I recently saw one in Oxfam for £30 (!), and they regularly go for that and upwards on eBay. They were created by Angela Banner (b. 1923) and published in the 1960s and 70s.

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