Book Type: Children's Literature
Author: Jane Yolen
After the crew of a small Dutch ship pulls a half-man, half-fish creature from the sea, the lieutenant feels honor bound to return him to his domain. What the lieutenant doesn't know is that his compassion has earned him a guardian and a friend whose knowledge of the ocean will forever touch his life.
Jane Yolen is an author that has been reviewed on this blog, and she is definitely a creative and imaginative writer. One of my favorite books that she wrote is titled, Neptune Rising which you can view here. Naturally I was excited to read this, especially since there aren't many books on mermen. The story/plot immediately takes off with no hesitation, and the captivating black and white illustrations help keep the story interesting and also helps the depict the many emotions both the sailors and the merman face. What I also loved is that the story was not written in a juvenile fashion, even though it was in the children's section of the library. Yolen also mentions that this book is based off a real account of a merman sighting! Cool! I do have to mention though, for a kid's book, it was startlingly depressing! The poor merman is thrown around the cabin, left to almost suffocate by the ruthless sailors, and almost dies, leaving his family fatherless! I don't really recommend this as something a child should read right before they go to sleep, but it was definitely an original tale that merfolk will like. I give this book (****) 4 stars.
-Sirenita The Selkie