Age 9-12 | Hardback | 40 pages | 200 x 150mm
Publication September 2016 | ISBN 9781910862476
The smallest of three brothers, Keenan Mowat had a priceless talent: he loved the sea and the sea loved him right back.
One in a series of tales that explore the deeper, darker side of our connection with the natural world. Be ready to feel a little bit of magic, and perhaps a few shivers down the spine.
Books in the Shadows & Light series:
- The White Hare
- Mother Cary's Butter Knife
- The Selkie's Mate
- Elias Martin
- Bee Boy and the Moonflowers
- The Eel Question
Anja Uhren is a storyteller - working with images as well as words to deliver narratives. Originally from Germany she now lives and works in the UK as a freelance illustrator, after graduating from the Arts University Bournemouth in summer 2015. Anja loves drawing, travelling and comics and nothing better than combining all three. On her journeys, big and small, she always carries one or two sketchbooks to record observations and impressions which later inform and inspire her illustration practice.
"Two illustrated stories set long ago and far away. Small but sea-loving Keenan Mowat is the youngest of three brothers. He rescues them all from sure death when he heeds a strange man’s words and takes a hook, an ax, and a silver sword—a butter knife—with him when the brothers go out on their fishing boat. Ostra, meanwhile, is from “the days before computers, before cars, before electricity…[when] humans were closer to nature.” Her ability to communicate with animals—and they with her—saves her from a cruel, selfish man who wants to marry her for her strength. Both Ostra and Keenan find love in very different ways. Each tale is illustrated in a similar line and wash palette, though with a distinctive style. Uhren’s illustrations in Mother Cary’s Butter Knife create continually dark, foreboding sea scenes, while Izlesou’s art in The White Hare contrasts pastoral scenes and gentle Ostra with a harsh huntsman. Both titles have a sophisticated sensibility but will read aloud well. VERDICT Unusual and beautifully illustrated offerings from a small Welsh publisher. Ideal for fans of dark folktales and fairy tales.–Maria B. Salvadore, formerly at District of Columbia Public Library" School Library Journal, March 2017
"The book is short, but will immerse you in its story, and the illustrations add to the mystical and otherwordly feel. Mother Cary’s Butter Knife by Nicola Davies and Anja Uhren is a new fairy tale that already feels like a classic." San Diego Book Review
'Inspired by traditional folk tales of mythical sea creatures, this other-worldly story of the savagery and beauty of the ocean will captivate readers. The ethereal illustrations, in a palette of watery blues, greens and greys, perfectly complement the poetic narrative. The author’s love and respect for nature shines through in this mesmerising tale from the Shadows and Light series.' BookTrust's Watery Reads for 8-12s