THE LITTLE SPOTTED FISH
Illustrated by Friso Henstra
ISBN# 0-8164-3134-5 S/A hardcover
An original fairy tale about a fisherlad who meets a magical talking fish and rescues her, done with his own skills and not magic. I love the story, but the pictures puzzle me. It is clearly a Celtic story–all the clues are there: a green island, a coracle (a skin boat) and references to Irish poets and Scottish folk wisdom in the notes. But the Dutch artist Henstra set it in some kind of mythical Bora Bora. Still it won some art awards when it was published. There is a Japanese edition. I was reliably told by a Japanese friend that the title in Japanese is “Diran o diran,” which means “Dylan oh Dylan” (the hero’s name).