Half a Creature from the Sea: A Life in Stories

by David Almond and Eleanor Taylor

David Almond shares dimensions of his childhood growing up in the working class town... read more

David Almond shares dimensions of his childhood growing up in the working class town of Felling-on-Tyne in England in the 1950s and 1960s in a series of reminiscences that precede each of the short stories in this collection, many of which have autobiographical elements. The stories draw on the same themes seen in many of Almond’s novels: religion, art, working-class life, friendship. A sense of the specific community in which they are set, and of things that exist just beyond the realm of reality, also infuse a number of the stories, which are both gritty and lovely. Almond writes: “These stories take place in a real world—the streets in which I grew, the fields and beaches over which I walked. People I know appear in them. But in fiction, real worlds merge with dreamed worlds. Real people walk with ghosts and figments. Earthly truths go hand in hand with watery lies.” (Ages 11–14)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2016

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