- Megan Bingham
Marco the fox watches as the antlered ship arrives in the harbor. This makes him wonder about the world out there. "Why don't trees ever talk?" he thinks. "How deep does the sun go when it sinks into the sea?"
But when Marco proposes these questions to his fellow foxes, they do not know how to answer him. "What does that have to do with chicken stew?" they ask.
So begins the tale of The Antlered Ship. Soon after the arrival of the massive vessel, Marco greets the ragtag travelers on the gangplank. "We hope to hire a seaworthy crew," explains the captain, a deer named Sylvia. "I'm afraid we aren't very good sailors."
A flock of pigeons are ready for an adventure, too, as they join Marco and the trio of deer on a voyage headed for a wonderful island filled with delectable trees and shrubs. But Marco isn't concerned about dinner . . . he thinks, "maybe there's a fox out there to answer all my questions . . . finally!" As they sail on, they encounter troubles in strange waters, including dangerous rocks, thunderstorms, and pirates. Will Marco and his friends ever make it to the tall, waving grass and short, swaying trees of the mysterious island? Will Marco find another fox to answer all his questions about the world?
Children's author Dashka Slater's new title The Antlered Ship is a beautiful picture book about exploring. With Marco's inquisitive nature, the intelligence of the pigeons, and the enthusiasm of Sylvia and the other deer, the ship's adventure is bound to be an exciting one. Slater's hypnotizing words help the story move along, but the Fan Brothers' gorgeous illustrations are what really drives the story. In every illustration, the detail is so precise, that you must take a minute or longer to look at everything they contain. This is the first children's book the Fan Brothers have illustrated—the other being The Night Gardener.
If you're looking for more books with fun, fantastical, and detailed illustrations like The Antlered Ship, check out author Chris Van Allsburg's work or The Eleventh Hour: A Curious Mystery, by Graeme Base.
Make your own waterproof Antlered Ship below with author Dashka Slater!