➳ A Treadwell BOOK REVIEW [artwork by Dave Eggers]

Eggers Hatches An Odd One

‘It is Right to Draw Their Fur’ is a curiously groomed tangent

I never knew that Dave Eggers could draw. Actually, allow me to rephrase: I never knew that Dave Eggers was an illustrator. The modification comes in light of the realization that not only is the popular novelist and founder of non-profit publishing house McSweeney’s Publishing skilled at drafting a respectable representation of his subject, but he is quite successful at conveying a scene as well.

The Last Bookstore recently opened its Art & Rare Book Annex in a beautifully polarizing white space just left of the building’s main entranceway; it’s where I picked up this one-off gem of a sketch collection in all its thinly bound glory. If you haven’t checked it out yet, I highly recommend that you schedule a visit if only for its eye-catching back wall of ornately framed art!

It should be noted that It is Right to Draw Their Fur: Animal Renderings belongs to a larger body of work in which Eggers apprehensively showcases an intimate collection of animal sketches from recent years; the book supplements a large-format portfolio, both of which culminated with a gallery exhibition in 2010. The author-illustrator isn’t as artistically shy as he’d have us believe, however… His bold, confident line work outlines a subtle texturing ability that has me convinced Dave Eggers can draw almost as well as he can write. That said, it’s his words that help the drawings transcend their rather unmotivated page presence.

So how well-groomed is the fur on this book, a statement publication that is an obvious departure from Eggers’ standard written fare? It’s simple and to-the-point, with touches of tongue-in-cheek humor and moral finger wag appropriately mixed in. If that’s your cup of tea, It is Right to Draw Their Fur is good for steep after steep of deviated fun between chapters of an actual Dave Eggers novel.

Copyright © [Dave Eggers]