ISBN 10: 0863159826 / ISBN 13: 9780863159824
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Synopsis: When the shopkeeper gives Jenny a skinny, black kitten she has no idea who she has adopted. Fankle is no ordinary cat. The fiercely clever feline has lived six lives so far: lives of adventure, danger, fortune and poverty. He's stared down angry pirates, started a blood feud, won a war, advised an empress and leapt onto the moon.

Fankle tells Jenny tales of his former lives -- with the king of pirates, in ancient Egypt and even with the Empress of China. So what is he doing living in a crofter's cottage in Orkney?

This classic novel by George Mackay Brown is a rich and rewarding read for adults and children alike.


"The theme of the book is the power of narrative. Living as she does for story making, Jenny projects her skill on to Fankle. The village schoolchildren are asked to write about Fankle, and their efforts make up the central chapter of the novel. There is stimulus here for readers' own writing. Mackay Brown modulates the mood delicately―amusing, roistering, and touching. Underlying there is a wistful reminder that all lives, not only Fankle's, are brief and that humans, unlike cats, have only one." ―Treasure Island: A guide to Scottish fiction for young readers aged 10-14, summer 2003

About the Author: The work of George Mackay Brown (1917–1996) is defined by the spirit and history of the Orkney islands. He managed to give the culture, land, and oral tradition of the islands universal significance. Throughout his prolific writing career, he found inspiration in the history and folklore of Orkney.

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