The world is an exciting place, although it may not seem like it when you live in a grey town. Simon Chapman is an explorer and nature lover who has travelled the globe looking for excitement and some of the world’s most majestic creatures. He has several books that cover different countries and biomes and in the case of ‘Indian Lowlands’ he starts off in New Delhi and goes out on the search for animals including the elusive Bengal Tiger.
Chapman is part of the modern safari lover that is more likely to shoot with a camera than a gun. Chapman goes beyond this as he is an illustrator, so he draws what he sees, this gives the book a vibrant feel as he draws animals as he sees them. There is a quality to the drawings, but also a speed; he has just that moment to get the image on paper. The book takes the form of a diary and is full of factoids, but it also details his adventures. The main thrust is the search for a Bengal Tiger, but that does not stop Chapman from seeing many other animals as well and capturing them using pen and paper.
There is an earnest feel to ‘Indian Lowlands’ that portrays Chapman’s passion well, but it is a book for the animal loving child only. There is no pandering to the very short attention span – poo jokes or gross out moments. This is a real adventure written and illustrated in a way that a 9-12 year old can understand. Those tweens that love animals and geography will get a lot from this book, whilst others may not. The book itself is a quality hardback with colour imagery throughout. It is Chapman’s on the fly drawings and passion for the subject matter that makes the book stand out.