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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
Mangoes & Bananas
by Nathan Kumar Scott
Age Range: 6-8
Kanchil the mouse-deer and his best friend Monyet the monkey decides to plant their own garden. Kanchil wants to plant a mango tree and Monyet a banana tree. They wait and wait and wait until their seeds become trees and grow big enough to produce ripe fruit.
The problem is that Kanchil can’t climb trees and so he has to rely on his friend Monyet to climb up and pick the fruit. He suggests that Monyet pick the fruit and then they both share it between them. There’s just one problem though, Monyet climbs one of the trees and starts to eat half of the fruit, but clever Kanchil quickly thinks up a way to get even with him.
The story is accompanied by the exquisite ancient Indian textile art by T. Balaji which is in the traditional Kalamkari style originating on the south eastern coast of India in the 17th century. Painted on cloth, the images have been created using the elaborate original process, with bamboo pens and vegetable dyes, these illustrations bring a real richness to the tale.