John Kirk's Reviews > Cautionary Tales for Grown-ups

Cautionary Tales for Grown-ups by Chris Addison
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's review
Aug 17, 2011

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Read in August, 2011

This isn't quite what I expected from the cover, but it's entertaining and quite clever. It's not really about adults as compared to children (i.e. "stop doing X") but rather most of the topics will only apply to adults (e.g. driving a 4x4 in the middle of London). Most of them end with a karmic punishment, which reminded me of some of Roald Dahl's stories; the punishments are a bit excessive, but they're amusing in a slapstick way. Each tale is told as a rhyme, and that's an impressive skill.

However, I found some of them a bit difficult to read because the "beat" didn't match the normal emphasis for a sentence. For instance:
"He didn't want a costly skip
And as for driving to the tip
Himself, he thought he'd rather go
And barbecue his little toe."
In this example, "Himself" really belongs with line 2 rather than line 3. I think it's better for each line to stand alone, or for each pair of lines to be closely related. Still, most of them work well.

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