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a postcard of Jasper and Harvey, the Pooka

One of two postcards for The Constant Rabbit UK publication on the 2nd July 2020. I've been doing these giveaways for a long time now (You can see what they are here) but just because there are no face-to-face events, it does not mean the giveaway tradition can't carry on - just with a little forward planning and a few postage stamps.

This is me with Harvey, an acrylic portrait painted for me by my Mother-in-Law whose work can be found on her 'The Painted Net' Website.

Maggie's undertaken all manner of work for me over the years, but this is her first portrait of me, and is one of my most treasured possessions as I have always, always wanted a painting like this - ever since I first saw Harvey, upon which it is based. You can see the inspiration of the painting below, and it is about as close to the original size as I could estimate. If you haven't seen Harvey, then you must. It's delightful.

My first book published way back in 2001 had as its opening line a Harvey homage: 'My father had a face that could stop a clock'. The Giveaway code is FG-615.


FG-616 is the code of this image, and is (so far) the second of two postcards designed for the publication. Oddly, this was actually quite fun to do, and that's sort of worrying, as the language of hate and discrimination should be difficult to do, not easy.

The rabbit this is based on was a design by Lydia Blagden (to whom my thanks) at Hodder, and is usually with a standard carrot. Given that the (wholly spurious) insinuation that the rabbits in The Constant Rabbit are secretly plotting to overrun the UK by using 'weaponised promiscuity' (AKA 'A litterbombing campaign') This piece of graffiti is what 'Twolegsgood', the most vociferous Hominid Supremacist group came up with. The bomb flukes are borrowed from Banksy's 'Girl hugging bomb' to give it extra poignancy - that images of peace can be maligned to give the opposite message.

It's a three colour stencil spray can artwork, about 18" high, the first I've ever done. Had to do some thinking regarding the stencils re. overlaps and the colour sequence. I used to do a lot of screen printing when younger, so that helped.


And here is the man himself, in a publicity still from the 1950 movie. I think this painting must still exist somewhere, possibly in two forms - one for the movie and another for the stage play, also starring James Stewart. The notion of the 'Pooka' was alluded to quite strongly in the character of the Gronk in Early Riser and was indeed called 'The Pooca' for quite a few iterations. The Gronk, as finally written ended up as a sort of fusion between Harvey and the Groak of Tove Jansson fame.

The back of the rabbit graffiti postcard

FG-616 from the back, featuring the bookstamps that are also usually a part of a book launch - generally confined to readers who have their book signed face to face. The Green rabbit stamp (FG-618) was the one designed by Lydia at Hodder and appears on early promotional material, but I've adopted it here as the iconic depiction of rabbits in the TCR world - that which might be seen on road signs, and hence the hateful maligning that you see above right.

the back of the harvey postcard

More of the same, really, the back of the FG-615. You can have one of these 'First Day Covers' with the exclusive dated stamp (FG-619), as part of my usual giveaway offer. Since I can't give them out in person, I'll send them out.

So if you've bought a book and want a postcard, just send an email to me at jasper(at)jasperfforde.com and I'll pop one in the post. Offer is still open today, 5th August 2020, and will continue while stocks last.

This applies to all Hodder markets - you don't get to miss out because you live in Auckland or something, although they might take longer to reach you. And please note USA readers, if you want a freebie postcard, then you can go to this form that Penguin have devised and enter your details there - final entry date is 1st September, for the form, but I'm sure we can devise something else for any latecomers once we're past that.

You can find a preview of the USA postcards here.



The '1st Day of Publication' Stamp is no more. There are now currently 432 UK hardcover books with the stamp, and 500 postcards, of which I still have stocks remaining. If you want one, see the instructions above.


Updated August 5th 2020