Monday 12 March 2012

The Grizzly King, a 1947 Czech edition

This is one of my favourite stories of all time. I first encountered it around the age of seven as the film The Bear. I loved it, even though I cried watching it... Much later, I found the book in a second-hand bookshop (and bought the film on DVD).

This is an absolutely delightful 1947 edition, with beautiful lino- or woodcut illustrations (at least I think that's what they are) by Štefan Cpin - whom I've never heard about, what a shame!

I have more books published in the 1940s, but this one is definitely one of my favourites.


  1. What a gorgeous book! What a lucky find. It sounds a little like Bambi with bears - I'd love to hear a better, more detailed plot summary.

    1. It's a story of two bears, one grizzly and one black bear cub, who lost his mother and attaches himself to the big bear; and a hunter who is after the big grizzly and catches the small bear along the way.
      A brief summary, this. I don't want to give away the whole plot... It's one of those more realistic animal stories that sprang to life around the turn of the century (I'm not sure how old this particular story is). Which means a lot of it is concerned with the animals themselves; and as a result of that, a lot of it is not necessarily just a story, although it has a very powerful overall story as well. Does that make at least some sense? ;-)
      It's a very lucky find. One of those books that were made to last... When I find such a book, in such a good state, in a bookshop, I always wonder how it came to be there.

  2. Ooh antiquarian book check. Illustrations check. Woodcut check. Pure awesomeness.