Josie ISBN: 9780749741587
Published by Mammoth, 2000
This unusual, lyrical book will only be understood by children willing to spend time pondering its wisdom. Josie is a baby girl who appears first to a village of animals, coming into their harbour on the back of a swan. Sanders, a pig who is a master carpenter, brings her up lovingly with the help of Old Donkey. When she is grown, she falls in love with Soldier and has his son. All this sounds simple if unusual, but death and life are themes throughout, and what is really a fairy tale of mystic realities deals with the death of Sanders, the death of Soldier, both in a dream and in reality, and, finally, the death of Josie herself. The story comes full circle when another baby girl is seen coming into the harbour, riding on a swan. Death is sad but joyous ultimately in this enigmatic book, and Josie and the animals discover that grief cannot be locked away in a cupboard, but must be experienced so that happiness may come after.