Brendan and the Whale

It was through story that St Brendan first heard of the Land of the Promise of God and was thus inspired to set his mind to finding this wonderful place. And it is through Clare Maloney’s tremendously lyrical and catchy story that we follow the crew and St Brendan through tumult and tempest, peace and serenity, as they island-hop – to such destinations that would make even the itinerary of the most daring backpacker seem dull – to their journey’s end where Easter Mass is held on a moving, whale-like island. Maloney’s superb rhyming text is supported beautifully by the zany cartoons of Jeanette Dunne which match the words wonderfully. This union makes wacky and fun a period of history which, with all due respects to St Brendan, can appear dull and far removed to child readers – a phenomenon for which many teachers will be extremely grateful, as will their pupils. To call it a wonderful educational tool is not only true but a disservice, as this work can also be enjoyed as a shared or individual read for children aged 7+.