The Book That Made Me: David Almond 20/03/19
The life of toilet attendant Jim Bloggs is pretty dreary and his great wish is to escape. Jim knows that his lack of education holds him back, but he has imagination - and surely that is enough?
Our hapless hero finds out that life isn't quite that simple, when he cobbles together a Highwayman outfit and sets off on a series of comic misadventures.
Scatological humour aside (and there's more than a whiff of that), there are also moments of fine gentle humour in this short graphic novel.
Anyone who's read Where the Wind Blows will know what fate lies in store for the gentle, loveable couple, but Gentleman Jim is a masterpiece of the power of imagination.
As a tale of thwarted ambition, it is heartbreaking, but Briggs never succumbs to a dark kind of despair. The story is funny and uplifting, with beautiful, delicate illustrations - a charming story for dreamers.