Salar the Salmon

Henry Williamson, Author, Michael Loates, Illustrator, Richard Williamson, Introduction by David R. Godine Publisher $14.95 (207p) ISBN 978-0-87923-845-2
Williamson's (1895-1977) charming tale of a salmon's final journey upstream uses varied perspectives, animal and human, to construct a view of nature that is persuasive in its exquisite detail. Salar , originally published in Britain in 1935, is populated with characters such as Gralaks, ``a young maiden salmon''; Trutta, a great spotted sea trout; Old Nog the heron; and even some people--poachers and water-bailiffs constantly on the lookout for each other. The animals inhabit a natural kingdom of beauty, but also one of pain and death: a sea bird's feathers are damaged when it surfaces through a slick of crude petroleum; a lamprey latches onto Salar's side, sucking out the fish's blood until it, in turn, is attacked by a predator; a salmon on its way back to the sea after spawning is killed by a young boy with his father's fishing rod. British artist Loates's sensitive new illustrations of the Devon setting (both color and black and white) complement the text without overwhelming it. Williamson wrote Tarka the Otter. ( May )
Reviewed on: 08/29/1994
Release date: 09/01/1994
Genre: Nonfiction
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