Underwater action

20th October 2000 at 01:00
Sea-Cat And Dragon King, the late Angela Carter's delightful underwater fable, in which a wise but doleful and ugly Dragon King finally gets the attention he craves, is published by Bloomsbury Children's Books (pound;9.99).

Sea-Cat has a splendid catsuit, knitted from skeins of seaweed, and decorated with shells, tin plate and polished bottle glass. When he wears it he is the talk of the ocean deep. Dragon King, covered in warts and other bumps, is sickwith jealousy.

He makes a futile attempt to acquire Sea-Cat's coat and then cries forlorn ruby tears when he learns that the coat was made with love for Sea-Cat by his own mother.

The resolution is heart-warming and the black-and-white illustrations, by Eva Tatcheva, evoke perfectly the deep-sea fairytale world of this story for Year 2 and above.

Michael Thorn is deputy head of Hawkes Farm primary school, Hailsham, East Sussex


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