A lyrical, richly illustrated story explores a child's relationship with his sleepy seaside fishing town.
If you keep walking over the hills and across the fields, you will come to the edge, where the land meets the sea. And on this edge lies a village. This is my home.
In this village by the sea, a young boy notes the roles that each person in town plays. Everyone is busy: the blacksmith, the boatbuilder, the baker. But most important of all, the boy thinks, are the fishermen who bring in the catch, braving the waves and windy weather to return with the finest, freshest fish. His father is a baker, but the boy wants to be a daring fisherman when he grows up, undaunted by the stormy seas. “Have you ever been to sea?” the boy asks his father. Surely sailing out on the wet and wild waves to feed the town is the most meaningful job of all. More meaningful than a baker. In this softly drawn look at an enduring way of life, Paula White provides a timeless reminder that everyone—and every role—is essential, no matter how small or quiet they may seem.
Paula White grew up by the sea and has worked as an artist and textile designer as well as teaching drawing and printmaking. The Baker by the Sea is her first picture book. She lives in Suffolk, England.
In this debut by White, artwork in pencil and ink evokes an era when a community joined hands to secure its livelihood, a vision embraced by the narrator, who dreams of a future at sea. . . White’s tale pays witness to the importance of a community’s inter workings.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
A love letter to a bygone era in coastal England. . . . Pencil-and-ink illustrations, rendered in a muted palette of blue, gray, white, and sepia, underscore the text’s nostalgic feel. . . . A toasty warm, sentimental read.
Soft pencil-and-ink illustrations, mostly in graphite gray with blue and white highlights, vividly recreate a bygone time.
A palette of gray, blue, and yellow render stormy seas, sweeping hills, the busy dockside, and cozy village scenes with glowing windows in this love letter to the author’s childhood on the coast of Suffolk, England. . . This gentle tale of village life and the interdependence of a small community would make a calming bedtime story.
—The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books