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Mer-Child: A Legend for Children and Other Adults

Morgan, Robin with Illustrations by Jesse Spicer Zerner and Cover Art by Amy Zerner

10 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1558610537 / ISBN 13: 9781558610538
Published by The Feminist Press, 1993
From Riverrun Books & Manuscripts (Hastings on Hudson, NY, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

one of 200 numbered copies signed by Morgan and the two Zerners. minor wear to the slipcase else fine with nice bright d.j. Additionally inscribed by Morgan on the title page. Bookseller Inventory # 62924

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Mer-Child: A Legend for Children and Other ...

Publisher: The Feminist Press

Publication Date: 1993

Binding: Hardcover

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: First.

About this title


This enchanting story tells of two outsiders who find a deep kinship in each other. The Mer-Child -- with his pale green skin, surf-white hair, and shimmering tail -- is not fully accepted in the sea world or the human world. The Little Girl -- child of a black mother and a white father --has been ostracized both because of her race and because her legs are paralyzed. The bond they weave, against all odds, becomes a wondrous celebration of our common capacity to love.

From Kirkus Reviews:

A sweet (if purposive) story by the editor of Ms. magazine, couched as a modern sequel to ``The Little Mermaid'': When the Mer-Child hears Andersen's tale, he recognizes it as his parents' story, though important details differ (e.g., his father--a mariner, not a prince--remained faithful). The Mer-Child is a lonely creature: his parents' suffering ``had made them forever grown-up, and they were now a special kind, complete unto themselves.'' Rejected by the mermaids because of his mixed parentage, he wanders alone in the sea until he meets the human ``Little Girl''--also rejected, because her mother was black and her father is white--wheelchair-bound on the rocky shore while her father paints. It's the beginning of an idyllic friendship, with gifts and confidences exchanged and the Mer-Child encouraging the girl to learn to swim despite her useless legs. In time, she becomes an oceanographer and environmentalist; in old age, the two are transformed into a pair of loving swallows. The story moves slowly, driven more by its several messages than by character or more universal themes. Still, Morgan writes with appealing grace, mostly avoiding the sentimentality to which tales of yearning love are prone. Zerner's elegant pen drawings embellish an unusually attractive format featuring decorative initials and tailpieces; her daughter Amy Zerner's colorful jacket art will also attract readers. (Fiction. 9-12) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Established in 1978, Riverrun was purchased in 2016 by Tom Lecky, former head of Christie's New York book department, and an auction veteran with over 25 years of experience in the field. Riverrun stocks over 30,000 books, specializing in fine, rare, and unusual books from all periods and genres. There are large holdings in literature, signed and inscribed books, early printed books, Americana, history, philosophy, science fiction, and scholarly books.

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