The story is told by Coriander, daughter of a silk merchant in 1650s London. Her idyllic childhood ends when her mother dies and her father goes away, leaving Coriander with her stepmother, a widow who is in cahoots with a fundamentalist Puritan preacher. She is shut away in a chest and left to die, but emerges into the fairy world from which her mother came, and where time has no meaning. When she returns, charged with a task that will transform her life, she is seventeen. This is a book filled with enchantments -- a pair of silver shoes, a fairy shadow, a prince transformed into a fox - that contrast with the heartbreaking loss and cruelty of Coriander's life in the real world. With its brilliantly realized setting of old London Bridge, and underpinned by the conflict between Royalists and Puritans, it is a terrific page turner, involving kidnapping, murder and romance, and an abundance of vivid characters. Coriander is a heroine to love, whose joys and sorrows we follow through huge adventures. Her story is utterly captivating and will establish Sally Gardner as a major children's writer, of boundless imagination and originality.
- Downloadable audio file
- 11 Apr 2006
- Orion Publishing Co
- Orion (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
- London, United Kingdom
- Abridged edition
About Sally Gardner
Sally Gardner was an award-winning costume designer for the theatre before realising her ambition of writing and illustrating children's books which she now does full-time. She lives in North London with her three children. Ranked among Great Britain's most esteemed stage actresses, Juliet Stevenson also lends her talent to film and television productions. A graduate of London's Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, she first made waves in classical theatre in the early '80s. Her most acclaimed film role was in Truly, Madly, Deeply (1991). Aside from starring in such films as Nicholas Nickleby and Bend It Like Beckham, she is a very experienced reader of audiobooks, having read titles from Jane Austen to Agatha Christie. She has also read I, Coriander and The Thirteenth Tale for Orion.