Abaddon Books, an imprint of Rebellion Publishing, is to release Not So Stories, a diverse anthology written "in reaction" to Rudyard Kipling's Just So Stories.
The publisher holds world rights to the collection, a "bold and timely" anthology which sees culturally diverse writers create short works "in reaction" to Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories, a children's book which the publisher said is "deeply rooted in British colonialism".
A spokesperson for Abaddon Books said: "Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories was one of the first true children’s books in the English language, a timeless classic that continues to delight readers to this day. Beautiful, evocative and playful, the stories of 'How the Whale Got His Throat' or 'The First Letter Written' paint a magical, primal world. It is also deeply rooted in British colonialism. Kipling saw the Empire as a benign, civilising force, and his writing can be troubling to modern readers. Not So Stories attempts to redress the balance, bringing together new and established writers of colour from around the world to take the Just So Stories back; giving voices to cultures that were long deprived them."
The company added: 'With a gorgeous cover by Vegas-based artist Joseph Watson, and interior illustrations by renowned British writer and illustrator Woodrow Phoenix, this is an anthology for those who are conscious of the power behind the stories we tell to both our children and ourselves."
The anthology will feature stories by Adiwijaya Iskandar, Joseph E. Cole, Raymond Gates, Zina Hutton, Georgina Kamsika, Cassandra Khaw, Paul Krueger, Mimi Mondal, Tauriq Moosa, Jeannette Ng, Ali Nouraei, Zedeck Siew, Rivers Solomon and Achala Upendran.
Editor David Thomas Moore said: “It’s been a blessing working on this project; I’ve been blown away by the talent. By turns funny, sad, clever, raw, powerful and intensely personal, the Not So Stories are a showcase of some of the finest new writers around the world. Look out for these names.”
Contributing author Jeannette Ng added: “The act of reclaiming Kipling's title and format is powerful and inspiring. And I am just delighted to be part of this.”
Abaddon will publish Not So Stories in April 2018.