Monday, April 09, 2007

The Monkey & the Crab by Shawn Cheng and Sara Edward-Corbett
Brooklyn-based Partyka artists Shawn Cheng and Sara Edward-Corbett deliver this well-crafted and ultra charming mini based on a Japanese folktale.

The Monkey & the Crab is wrapped in a silver silk screened cover punched and tied together with purple yarn. Inside is the usual high quality Partyka mini-comic. The monkey finds a persimmon seed; at the same time the crab finds a dumpling. The conniving monkey jealously eyes the crab’s dumpling. The crab eloquently shows the monkey that a persimmon seed, once planted and tended, provides a lifetime of sustenance, while the dumpling only gives a moment’s satisfaction. The monkey, a vagabond without a family, then forces a trade with the crab who has a family to support. After reluctantly agreeing to the exchange, the crab carefully tends and nurtures his persimmon seed. The seed grows to a beautiful and fecund tree, capable of feeding the crab’s family and friends.

Then the jealous and hungry monkey comes back.
This is a fantastic mini-comic – compact, moving, and eloquent. It’s a fairy tale and a moral lesson neatly packaged in a striking cover. Purchase the 64-page The Monkey & the Crab at the Partyka webstore for $7. Check out sample art from their other minis while you’re there. The Partyka gang puts out some of the best mini-comics you’ll ever find.

Stay tuned for a review of Matt Wiegle’s fish tale Seven More Days of Not Getting Eaten.

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