Downunderground, by Craig Hilton – book review by Fred Patten.

by Patch O'Furr

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

Downunderground, by Craig Hilton. Illustrated.
Collie, Western Australia, Collie Mail Printing, February 1996, paperback AUS$5.95 (32 pages).

Downunderground cover (front) (Small)Don’t try to buy this. You can’t. Craig Hilton sent me a copy when it was published in 1996. It was long out of print when I had a stroke in 2005; friends boxed up my belongings while I was in the hospital, and it disappeared. It has just been rediscovered. Nobody reviewed it at the time, and it is forgotten today. But it did exist, and as a (ex)-librarian, I am obsessed that it should be documented somewhere. Besides, Craig Hilton is now a popular cartoonist as “Jenner”, the author/artist of the daily Doc Rat Internet strip. His fans would surely enjoy this very much. Perhaps he could publish a new edition, or add it to one of his Doc Rat collections?

Craig Hilton graduated from Australian medical school as a general practitioner (GP) in the 1980s. He was also active as a furry cartoonist during this time. One of the requirements of new Australian GPs is that they spend several years interning in a variety of small towns that need a doctor. Hilton did. Around 1990-‘91 he (with his wife, Julia) was the only doctor in Collie, Western Australia; a coal-mining town “a hundred miles from anywhere” (actually 132 miles south of Perth, the state capital). Medical duties there were not onerous, and he had considerable spare time on his hands. He volunteered to draw a free comic strip for the town’s weekly newspaper. Read the rest of this entry »