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Sea King, The
Jane Yolen and Shulamith Oppenheim; illustrated by Stefan Czernecki

9 1/2” x 11” • 32 pages • full-color illus. throughout
ISBN 9781566564595 • hardback • $15.95

"Combining several elements of Russian folklore, the authors create an engaging tale using old motifs in new ways... The bright, deep colors of Russian folk art, particularly the nesting dolls called matryoshka, inform the pictures, making pleasing patterns...Lots of folkloric elements neatly combined and pictures bright enough for group reading create a nice addition to Yolen's huge canon both singly and with collaborators."
--Kirkus Reviews

"Folkloric motifs abound and Baba Yaga and Vasilisa make cameo appearances in this original folktale...Students of folklore will find a literal treasure hunt as they search for the numerous elements that enrich the story...youngsters may enjoy the puzzle like aspects of the tale...bold graphics tantalize the eye."
--School Library Journal

"Jane Yolen and Shulamith Oppenheim also take to the water in The Sea King, illustrated by Stefan Czernecki. The motif is familiar: a king accepts help from a stranger and unwittingly gives up his firstborn in return. A hero's quest follows as the young prince seeks to win the hand of one of the Sea King's 12 daughters, along with his freedom. Czernecki's bold illustrations are completely devoid of the wimpy pastels so often found in children's books."
--The Salt Lake City Tribune


The Sea King lives deep under the sea in an exquisite crystal palace. He rarely leaves his halls, except to search out a human victim. One day, the Sea King does a very big favor for a king from the land above. In return, however, he extracts a promise. And without realizing it, the king of the land has promised the Sea King his newborn son....

This wonderful tale contains many rich elements of folklore—a talking eagle who can do magical deeds, a frightening witch with iron teeth, a kind and honest prince, and twelve beautiful maidens who can turn into swans. These threads are masterfully woven into a dramatic and stunningly illustrated tale, one which readers of all ages will enjoy.

Jane Yolen is the author of over 200 books for children, young adults, and adults. Winner of the World Fantasy Award for her folk collection Favorite Folktales from around the World, she has authored a dozen other folklore collections, including Gray Heroes, Mirror, Mirror, Not One Damsel in Distress, and The Fairies’ Ring. Her work has won the Nebula Award, the Caldecott Medal, three Mythopoeic Society Awards, the Jewish Book Award, five bodies of work awards, and been nominated for the National Book Award. She lives in Massachusetts and St. Andrews, Scotland.

Among Shulamith Oppenheim’s many books are two fantasies, The Selchie’s Seed and for adults, The World Invisible. Iblis, the retelling of the Islamic version of the Fall from Eden, was an ALA Notable for older children, 1994.

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