A Pocketful of Crows by Joanne M. Harris
I am as brown as brown can be,
And my eyes as black as sloe;
I am as brisk as brisk can be,
And wild as forest doe.
(The Child Ballads, Ballad 295, The Brown Girl)
So begins a beautiful tale of love, loss and revenge. Following the seasons, A Pocketful of Crows balances youth and age, wisdom and passion and draws on nature and folklore to weave a stunning modern mythology around a nameless wild girl.
Only love could draw her into the world of named, tamed things. And it seems only revenge will be powerful enough to let her escape.
A perfect autumn and Christmas read, this combines the harshness of nature with the spookiness of a ghost story and the comfort of a great folk tale, in one beautifully told novella which is stunningly illustrated by Bonnie Hawkins.