Louis raised a hand to silence the crowd. “In uncharted waters, my schooner drifted through heaving seas, where gruesome fish with bulging eyes and hairy moustaches reared out of the water.”
A member of the Royal Geographical Society revealed himself. “Is everything you say true?” he asked.
Louis smiled serenely. “Every word,” he replied without hesitation.
Louis de Rougemont is an explorer. He has written a book telling of his travels – travels so breathtaking amazing people queue up to come and hear him speak. There’s the story of riding a giant turtle, the one about wrestling a crocodile, and even one about finding giant nuggets of gold. Everywhere he goes Louis is feted and applauded. Until newspapers reveal him to be a charlatan – possibly the greatest liar on earth.
The Greatest Liar on Earth is wonderful historic fiction, telling the “true” story of a man who made his name by telling lies. Youngsters will enjoy de Rougemont’s tall tales, and the journey on which they take him, from poverty to fame and back again. Back of book facts show the truth on which some of his stories were based, and the illustrations bring to life both the rich tapestry of Victorian London and the exotic settings of the fraudster’s “adventures”.
The team of author Mark Greenwood and artist Frane Lessac have a knack for bringing history to life in a way sure to engage young readers, who will be intrigued with the character and his story at the same time they are learning about the past, and receiving a gentle lesson about the consequences of not telling the truth.
The Greatest Liar on Earth, by Mark Greenwood & Frane Lessac
Walker Books, 2012
This book is avaialble from good bookstores, or online from Fishpond.