From School Library Journal

Gr 1–4—Created with watercolor and pencil crayon, this tale is unique in its style. One of Neptune’s 50 daughters, Minnow doesn’t think she is remarkable. In fact, she thinks she’s truly useless, with no talent of her own. Her only companion is a little orange sea horse. Minnow is a curious mermaid, always asking questions that no one seems to understand. One day she finds a dainty little red shoe. It is only when she sets out on an adventure to learn about the purpose of shoes that she truly realizes that she is an explorer. The mermaid finds answers to her questions and rushes home to tell everyone of all that she has learned. While there is no sea witch to be found in this work that is reminiscent of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid, Minnow’s narcissistic sister Calypso is quite mean. Campbell’s illustrations employ ample blues and grays to portray deep waters of the sea. The mermaids are all identical, with fair skin, white hair, and thin bodies. It is only when Minnow catches a glimpse of the human world that the pages become vibrant with hues of red, yellow, and orange. This book is suitable for independent reading as well as a read-aloud. Minnow’s tale will remind readers that it is okay to ask questions and seek answers, to stand out and be unique.—H. Islam, Brooklyn Public Library


… the artwork is also full of subtle humor—Campbell definitively answers the question of what a shrugging octopus looks like—and the story solidly delivers its message about the value of inquisitiveness, adventurousness, and storytelling.―Publishers Weekly

With a clever storyline and enchanting pictures, this is an elegant choice for 4- to 9-year-olds who want a break from dinosaurs.―The Wall Street Journal

This fairy tale-like story is delightfully told with gentle humour, featuring an unlikely heroine, whose journey to discover a special role in her life will make a great read-aloud … I could see The Mermaid and the Shoe being successfully used as a vehicle in the classroom or home setting to reaffirm the power of perseverance, the importance of inquisitiveness and to remind children that there is value is believing in yourself.―CM Magazine

This book is suitable for independent reading as well as a read-aloud. Minnow’s tale will remind readers that it is okay to ask questions and seek answers, to stand out and be unique.―School Library Journal

The writing and illustrations somehow manage to convey both an old-fashioned fairy-tale quality and a contemporary edge. Our favorite book of the year (and maybe for years to come).―The Globe and Mail

The watercolor and pencil-crayon illustrations … have a similar sense of motion and playfulness. And the visual differences between the flow-y haired, teeny-weeny-seashell-bikini-clad mermaids and the Raggedy Ann-esque landmaid point to the subjectivity of storytelling (and also of beauty).―The Horn Book Magazine

Delicately illustrated by the author in watercolours and pencil crayon.―The Montreal Gazette

Campbell’s illustrations, of shadowy blue undersea scenes lightened by pale drifting hair and waving strands of kelp, have an attractive, old-fashioned style that harks back to classic picture books of the early 20th century … Campbell’s sense of visual humor and Minnow’s prince-free happy ending suit 2014 beautifully.―The New York Times

Although this luminous tale of self-discovery has echoes of ?The Little Mermaid,? like Minnow, it sings its own strong song.―Kirkus Reviews – Starred Review

See all Editorial Reviews
Each of King Neptune’s 50 mermaid daughters boasts a special talent, except for little Minnow, who seems to be good only at asking questions. When she finds a strange object, Minnow follows her questions to a wondrous place and finds answers, including the answer to the most important question of all: Who am I? A gorgeously illustrated story about finding one’s purpose.
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