About a hundred years ago, they say,
a mermaid ruled the cold sea that washed around northern lands
Everyone in Jon and Anna's village knows of the mermaid's beauty -- and her cruelty -- and is careful to speak well of her. Everyone but their grandfather, Eric, until the day the mermaid smashes his fishing boat against the rocks.
After that, Eric bids his family good-bye, for no one will sail with him again. But Jon and Anna never stop missing him, so they decide they must defeat the mermaid's curse and bring their grandfather home. . .
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Hailed as Scotland's most gifted storyteller and currently living in Inverness, Mollie Hunter has drawn many award-winning novels from her country's history. They include You Never Knew Her As I Did, a riveting tale about Mary, Queen of Scots, and her Carnegie Medal winner, The Stronghold. A Sound Of Chariots, her autobiographical novel, won the 1991 Phoenix Award from the Children's Literature Association.From School Library Journal:
Grade 4-6 A fantasy based on Scottish folklore in the manner of Hunter's earlier books such as The Haunted Mountain (1972) and The Kelpie's Pearls (1976; o.p., both Harper). ``About a hundred years ago, they say, there was a mermaid who ruled the cold, wild sea that washes around the northern lands,'' Hunter begins, and then tells of the one foolish, stubborn fisherman who refused to believe in the mermaid's power. Eric Anderson learned his lesson the hard waynear-death with all of his men and forced into exile, because now he could never be safe again in local waters. Heartbroken, his family called in the village wisewoman and gained a slight, confused glimmer of hope from her talk of threes and the gifts that Eric would send from other ports. Nearly three years after he'd gone, his grandchildren Jon and Anna find the way to use the gifts; their courage and determination to bring their grandfather home drive them to a final dangerous and triumphant confrontation with the mermaid. Hunter's prose is somewhat less musical than in some of her earlier books, but the characters are just as likable in their separate headstrong ways, briefly but clearly drawn. Her ability to entwine folk elements with matter-of-fact life in a 19th-Century fishing village is masterful. Sara Miller, White Plains Public Library, N.Y.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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