The Gigantic Beard that Was Evil | Stephen Collins

Gigantic Beard that was evil book cover

Gigantic Beard that was evil book cover


Who was it that said the best way to teach a lesson is to tell a story? Whoever it was, I don’t doubt they would take their hat off to Collins. 

What exactly is the lesson? I’ve no idea, but I know that by the time you put this graphic novel down you’ll be changed. Something inside you will click and unlock, and you’ll be more open-minded afterwards. Perhaps the lesson is simply to embrace ‘the other’, or to rigidly reject authoritarianism, or perhaps it’s just that you let things that wish to grow, grow. 

The Gigantic Beard that Was Evil’ tells the story of an island where everything is ordered. A land ruled by straight lines and schedules, where everyone lives in neat little houses with neat little lawns. That is until our protagonist, Dave the everyman, finds himself utterly overcome by a huge, unstoppable and monstrous beard. Oh dear, chaos has arrived at the island. 

Told through gentle but well-crafted rhyme and illustrated in stunning black and white crosshatch perfection, this book should be on everyone’s shelves. It’s both beautifully surreal and deeply, sadly real. And best of all, it’s funny enough to make Road Dahl wet himself. 

– Philip Webb Gregg