Written and illustrated by André François
France, Robert Delpire; New York, Universe Books, 1956
10.7" x 3.5"
Kerlan Collection, Children's Literature Research Collections
University of Minnesota Libraries
Interior illustrations used with permission from Enchanted Lion Books
A contemporary of fellow New Yorker artist and Romanian émigré Saul Steinberg, the Paris-based André François (born Farkas) was a virtuoso at the drafting table, with endless comedic surprises up his sleeve. In the droll volume shown here, editions of which were published in 17 countries, he mimics the exact look of an airmail parcel for a slipcase housing a crocodile-shaped book about a crocodile. The story's tongue-in-cheek purpose is to reveal the true meaning of "crocodile tears." Maurice Sendak, Jules Feiffer, and Quentin Blake are among the picture-book artists to have been inspired by François's devil-may-care élan.