Intern Chronicles: Review 1 The Book of Frog by Jan Zwicky (Pedlar Press)

After a beautiful and satisfying day at work (Wintern-ing) OR making delicious coffee and espresso beverages at Q Space (not unlike my favorite alternate personality Hannah in Girls) I enjoy looking at the books that line the shelves in the lovely bookshop I have the privilege to work at. One title which caught my attention several months ago was a charming pale green book by Jan Zwicky.

 The Book of Frog is a charming account of the life of frog, a small granite frog who is 200 million years old. The story opens with Hugh and Liv finding frog at a beach and bringing him home.  frog does not capitalize his name, likes traveling (when his humans remember to bring him along), has an imaginary friend, al, the albatross and enjoys internet cafes.

The story itself feels more like an observation of the everyday lives of Liv and Hugh with frog’s insisting nature cutting in like a child. He spends a lot of his time telepathically communicating or regularly emailing his friend Al, the imaginary albatross. In a very grounded text, Al is a present reminder of a spiritual existence. He flies above all and seems less attached to the woes of the world.  Zwicky’s talent lies in telling such an unusual and yet normal story. Despite the obvious question of the exact nature of frog’s relationship with his humans or how he can type emails if he is made of granite; The Book of Frog conveys a much needed message.

A simple life is worth living and the small pleasures of gardening or enjoying the ambiance of a green onion pancake at an internet café, are the things we should embrace.  Loving other people and enjoying a beautiful piece of music are equally valid pursuits and true happiness can be found in the small things. Even a 200 million year old granite ffrog.

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