10 March 2009

Timbuktu Revisited

You may remember that in a recent post, I wrote about Timbuktu, a story by Paul Auster, adapted and illustrated by Julia Goschke. Julia has been in contact with me and I thought you might be interested in reading what she has to say about the book:

'First I was happy that they (Penguin) did it anyway but I´m really sad about the work or no work penguin did. This project was one for my heart because i loved the novel of Paul Auster. I never thought about a childrenbook. It´s maybe a book for lovers of the novel… or adults who collect picture books and who wants to, can show it to their children. Everyones decision. I did everything by my own, contacts, production etc. and I didn´t understand why they are selling it in the children section. But they did what they did. There was no chance to intervene. They don´t ask you.
I´m really sad about this because it was hard work from start to publishing. Not only for the bad mood people get, but you don´t sell it if it´s not in the right shelf. And selling is hard enough. I did another picture book with them, Langley Longears, and it´s totally different. This is a childrenbook.'

Thank you for your input Julia, it is interesting to learn that Timbuktu was never really intended as a children's book and, incidentally, that in Germany you cannot just buy the book in a shop - it has to be ordered.

So in conclusion, I have a couple of messages. One to Paul Auster fans and picture book lovers - Julia's Timbuktu illustrations are a delight - you will not be disappointed if you buy this book! The second to booksellers - please put Timbuktu on the appropriate shelf - it's not meant for young children.
Thank you!


  1. Oh my! What an honor to be contacted by this wonderful artist.

    The marketing of this book is a tremendous disappointment, given all the hard work and incredible talent she has dedicated to this project. Seen in its intended light, it is a unique and beautiful book for adults. Thank you for sharing her comments with us.

  2. Hi Caroline, thanks for your comment on my blog :)
    Your artwork is stunning and what a beautiful place you live! This book would have attracted me too, by the illustrations. Not too sure about the story though!x


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