SEA TALE by Gail E. Haley


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Caldecott winner for A Story, A Story (1970), Haley here spins her own tale of the love of a mariner for a mermaid. Tom, imitating his great-uncle's story, barters for a magical mirror and comb that he uses as a lure to catch a mermaid in the Lovelorn Islands--forgetting that part of the bargain was to give the witchlike woman who gave him the trinkets a strand of his true-love's hair. The hair, of course, proves too precious to give up; but Tom outwits the witch by staying forever with his love in the sea. Though her way with a mermaid is less entrancing than Mollie Hunter's, Haley tells her story with charm and grace. Best are the illustrations: the bold woodcut line muted by gentle inking; the added color glorious and complex; the bright hues of a Caribbean sea and sunset subtly varied in intensity. Curiously, this mermaid has two finned tails--a sensible arrangement!

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1990
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Dutton