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Picture Kelpies Series

The Island and the Bear

May 2017
More details
  • Publisher
    Floris Books
  • Published
    30th May 2017
  • ISBN 9781782503682
  • Language English
  • Pages 24 pp.
  • Size 10.4" x 9.1"

Anything can happen anywhere.
Anywhere was an island.
Anything was a bear.

One windy morning on a wild and quiet Hebridean island, a bear appeared where there should not have been a bear.

The gentle giant played happily in streams, danced in the wind, and would not harm a living thing. But even friendly bears don't belong on Scottish islands. Will he ever find his way home?

This touching tale, recounted in Louise Greig's gentle verse, and brought to life by Vanya Nastanlieva's enchanting illustrations, is inspired by a true story that has since become legend in the Scottish Hebrides.

(Ages 3 to 6 years)

“Greig weaves magic in every line she writes.” —The Herald 

“A truly delightful book, one to share with anyone who will appreciate the sparse but beautiful use of language, combined with dramatic but heartfelt illustrations.” —Books for Keeps 

“With Louise Greig's gently rhyming text and Vanya Nastanlieva's wonderfully evocative hand-drawn illustrations, this is one of those children's books that is a joy to read to little bears.” —The Press & Journal 

“The story has a rather ethereal feeling about it, like a folk tale though based on a true story from the Scottish Hebrides. The soft, beautiful illustrations create a lovely tale.” —Youth Services Book Review 

“The Island and the Bear is a true animal fable that has a message of overcoming fear with love at its core. It is a great gift from an area celebrated for its isolated, wild, sea-framed beauty, poetry, and music.” —Midwest Book Review 

“...features lovely illustrations by Vanya Nastanlieva, which aptly capture the moods and shapes of the Hebridean coastline.” —West Coast Review 

“...flashes of lilting language and perceptive phrasing lift the text.... The universal themes of the story are easy for young readers to relate to and celebrating ‘bear-ness’ never loses its appeal! Vanya Nastanlieva's illustrations use muted, earthy colors—browns, greys, greens and blues—and plenty of space, evoking the sense of quiet and expansiveness of the Hebridean landscape... A special, soulful book.” —Armadillo 

“The story is very nicely written with rhyming verse and a rhythm to read aloud. The illustrations also add to the atmosphere.” —Barefoot on the Croft 

“Tender and lyrical...adults will just adore snuggling up to share this wonderful book with the children in their lives. I would highly recommend buying it.” —Catherine Ward, Waterstones customer

Louise Greig

Louise Greig is a multi-award–winning poet and author born in Scotland. She has been featured on shortlists for several major children's book awards, including the Waterstones Children's Book Prize. Inspired by the Scottish landscape and the company of animals, Louise's picturebooks include The Island and the Bear (Floris Books), and Kate Greenaway nominated The Night Box (Egmont). She lives in Aberdeen with her rescue greyhound Smoky.