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The House That Jack Built - Gavin Bishop

The House That Jack Built

By: Gavin Bishop

Paperback | 2 March 2012

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This is the dog
That worried the cat
That killed the rat
That ate the malt
That lay in the house that Jack built.

âThe House that Jack Built is a book with two strands. The main rhythmic text, based on the well-known rhyme, tells the story of Jack Bull, who travels to New Zealand from London as a new settler in 1798.

The detailed contemporary illustrations … tell the story from a Maori perspective—beginning with the myth of creation: Papatuanuku the earth mother, Ranginui the sky father and their children as guardians of the land. As the story goes on and Jack’s house grows, Papatuanuku is shown in the illustrations to weaken and fade.
âThis story holds a poignant environmental as well as cultural message and is a thought-provoking insight into the founding of New Zealand by the Europeans.â

(from www.picturebooks.co.nz)

Industry Reviews

"There is pleasure to be found at many levels in this splendid book..."

-- Magpies (AU)

"I feel that I can confidently predict that we won't ever find a more beautiful book that will keep their interest for years to come as they discover the different layers within the book...This is a really important book with a very important story."

-- Radio Southland (NZ)

"The old nursery rhyme is brought brilliantly to life in a colonial setting, based on Bishop's own whakapapa, wrapping indigenous myth in both word and pattern around traditional English text, drawing parallels between animals of myth and those brought by the Pakeha"

-- The Listener (NZ)

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