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Hortense and the Shadow
Written and illustrated by Natalia and Lauren O’Hara
Hortense is a little girl who detests the appearance and constant presence of her own shadow. One wintry day, in a fit of anger, Hortense takes matters into her hands and cuts herself free. A scary encounter with a group of bandits, in “wolfish woods”, teaches Hortense to see things differently and to seek to restore what she has lost. The lilting text and gorgeous spreads of snowy landscapes in pastel shades, with touches of bolder colours, create a magical atmosphere that is perfect for this carefully crafted, fairy tale. The story gently touches on themes of self-perception and facing your fears. This is a stunningly, beautiful debut picture book from two sisters who first discovered a love of stories and fables through the tales told to them by their Polish grandmother.