Corey’s Rock

Represented by:
Sophie Gorell Barnes

Category:
Children's, Fiction

Publisher:
Otter-Barry Books

Publication date:
September 24th, 2018

Foreign rights controlled by:
Otter-Barry Books

Ten-year-old Isla has moved from Edinburgh to the Orkney Islands with her parents, to start a new life after the death of Isla’s beloved young brother. Isla’s mother’s family is from Orkney and her father’s is from Africa, and she finds island life is very different to her former city home. Her discovery of the old Orcadian legend about the selkies, half human, half seal people, becomes the key to adjustment and acceptance.

Many strands are woven into this deceptively simple story – loss and discovery, legend and reality, the pleasures and problems of settling into a new place, the need to make new friends, the coming to terms with sadness. Jane Ray’s illustrations capture the beauty of the island landscape and integrate it perfectly with the atmosphere and rich texture of the storytelling.

Endorsed by Amnesty International for illuminating the human rights values of family, friends, home, safety and refuge.

Booktrust’s Book of the Day

Chosen as one of the Books of the Year 2019, Books for Keeps

Reviews

Written in narrative verse with exquisite full-page colour illustrations [by Jane Ray] A lyrical and deeply moving novella about bereavement and identity, shot through with the selkie (seal folk) myth.
Fiona Noble (preview The Bookseller)

A Magical Tale that will bring comfort to its young readers.
Sarah Crossan

A warmly compassionate, exquisitely beautiful story of love and loss, old tales and new beginnings.
Kate Agnew

Sensitive, sad and ultimately uplifting, this short tale of a family dealing with the loss of a child is deeply affecting. It touches on the plight of refugees drowning at sea also, and reflects on ideas of families and togetherness, despite the losses that may come. Brahmachari always writes with tenderness and awareness about how global and personal difficulties affect children, and Jane Ray’s soft wash illustrations hold the space beautifully for this quiet story of transformation and healing.
Booktrust

How to describe this book? It’s longer in length but also smaller in size compared with a picture book. But it’s illustrated and designed as if it were a picture book. The format the publisher Otter-Barry Books has chosen for it, suits the title perfectly.
Many strands are woven into this deceptively simple story – loss and discovery, legend and reality, the pleasures and problems of settling into a new place, the need to make new friends, the coming to terms with sadness. Jane Ray’s illustrations capture the beauty of the island landscape and integrate it perfectly with the atmosphere and rich texture of the storytelling.
Achuka

Corey’s Rock by Sita Brahmachari and Jane Ray is very special book, a collaboration between two children’s book creators at the height of their powers. Its format is unusual but very pleasing, one that it would be lovely to see more frequently. More text than a normal picture book, more images than a novel of this length, but how well the two work together to tell the story so poetically. It is simple in the telling but deals with complex emotions: bereavement, sadness, displacement, legend. 10-year-old Isla relocates to Orkney with her Scottish mother and African-origin father after the death of her brother and their loss becomes entangled with the local selkie legend. The sense of a life lived at the edge of the land and of the healing power of the sea is what really endeared the book to me. This is beautifully captured in the delicate watercolour illustrations, the wonderful cover and the endpapers.
Pam Dix, Books for Keeps