The Secret of Black Rock

Erin loves the sea and longs to be able to go out with her mother on her fishing boat. Erin’s fishing town lives under the shadow of dark legend, however, and no one, least of all her mother, is going to let her go out to sea. Unable to suppress her curiosity any longer, Erin sneaks on to her mother’s fishing boat one day to find out for herself about the secret of Black Rock.

This is a beautiful tale of discovery and the majesty of nature. It is also a carefully crafted and subtle reminder of how easy it is to misunderstand and forever lose the wonders of the natural world around us.

Todd-Stanton is a stand-out illustrative talent who combines powerful pictures and sparse text to lure the reader in while skilfully avoiding slipping into a preachy or moralistic tone. It is hard to pick a favourite spread, but I love the image of Erin enticing the living creature that is Black Rock to follow her back to shore, surrounded by the many wonderful ocean creatures that call Black Rock home. Buy, borrow or beg a copy of this book and keep an eye out for future offerings from this genuine talent.