Schumann the Shoeman, by John & Stella Danalis

One grey, wintery morning, a shoe factory opened in the town. Before long, everyone was wearing the shoes that spilled from its conveyor belts. The shoes came in just one style – sensible. They came in just one colour – salmon. And they wore out after just one season.

Schumann the shoemaker makes whimsical shoes that are not only works of art, but are also comfortable and long lasting. His customers love him and the shoes he makes. But when a shoe factory opens in town, Schumann’s world changes. Suddenly, everyone is wearing the sensible shoes produced by the factory.

When Schumann leaves the town he moves to a forgotten forest, where his skills are soon once again in demand – making shoes for the animals. He makes shoes for rabbits, flamingos and even elephants – but it is an order from a centipede that really tests his craft.

Schumann the Shoeman is a beautifully wrought fable which contrasts traditional workmanship with modern production and throw-away culture. Schumann’s tale is poignant, blending the humour of his whimsical shoes of all shapes and sizes with the sorrow of the loss of his craft and the silliness of the ironic ending.

Author John Danalis’ clever text is perfectly teamed with illustrations by Stella Danalis, in a collage technique which embodies the book’s message about workmanship.

A lovely offering which will speak to readers of all ages.

Schumann the Shoeman

Schumann the Shoeman, by John & Stella Danalis
UQP, 2009

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