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Format: Hardcover|Change
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on 15 September 2012
Peter Sis presents a graphic adaptation of the 12th century poem "The Conference of the Birds" by Attar of Nishapur. The story follows that all the birds of the world, sick of all the misery and suffering on Earth, set out on a lengthy journey to find a king, Simorgh, who will put things right. Along the way they journey through 7 valleys: Quest, Love, Understanding, Detachment, Unity, Amazement, and Death.

Much of the poem is missing from this book as the focus of this book is Sis's artwork - and what artwork it is! The conference of the birds at the start is extraordinarily detailed with a double page look at thousands of birds of all species in one open plain and Sis has drawn every one so they are all distinct. The valleys are all beautifully painted to reflect the various themes, and the mountain of the king at the end is particularly haunting.

This is a parable and has that dreamlike element of all great parables where reality and fantasy fuse wonderfully - but I found the ending to be a bit... trite? I realise this is a nearly 1000 year old story but the message at the end was still a bit cheesy, the kind of payoff Khalil Gibran and Paulo Coelho made famous in their books. If you enjoy those writers and wonderful artwork, this book is for you. For me, the artwork makes this book worth picking up.
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on 4 December 2014
The idea of illustrating Attar's poems is a lovely one but I am not sure that the kind of paintings that Peter Sis favours gives justice to one of the world's spiritual masterpiece... Attar's words are profound and his spirituality almost divine. It is a challenge to want to illustrate such depths with childish paintings....
Still, I love the idea. I would love to see other illustrators having a go at The Conference of Birds too!
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on 30 July 2012
This is an illustrated story that works for childen and adults alike. It's a pleasure to leaf through it as the paper is good quality and it's worth the price. It's a very old story/legend that everyone should read at least twice.
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on 1 January 2014
This is a visually stunning book. Since I already knew the story, I expected a bit more from the way the ending was told. I don't think it's that interesting for a child. I wish it had been something I could read to my kids, but it will have to stay mine for a while.
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on 16 February 2014
Beautifully illustrate book, Peter Sis is a genesis. if you like reading books with pictures then this is a great accompaniment to the Oxford classic version of the conference of the birds. This is purely a picture book. Love it!
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on 5 December 2015
Promised fulfilled.
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