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Paperback edition of The Little Black Fish
Paperback edition of The Little Black Fish

Our best-selling title The Little Black Fish, illustrated by Hans Christian Andersen Award winner Farshid Mesghali, will be out in paperback at the end of this month! Selected by the Guardian as one of the best books of the year in 2015, it’s a beautiful book about freedom, self–determination, courage and power. It’s about a little fish swimming against the tide…

A wise fish begins with telling the tale to her 12,000 grandchildren. She speaks of a little, black fish who wants to see what else is beyond the stream. Little Black Fish is tired of the other fish, all swimming up and down and around. They weren’t very nice or very clever fish. So Little Black Fish decides to leave. The story follows him to the sea in a political allegory that is as poignant now as it was 50 years ago. Sadly, it doesn’t end well for Little Black Fish, but by the time old fish has finished her story, only 11,999 of her grandchildren remain to listen. A Little Red Fish has gone to explore what else is possible in the world… This final message of hope is what gives the book its lasting legacy and ensures it as a classic across the world for any little fishes trying to break free.

First published in 1968, it rocked the nation during a pre-revolutionary Iran – a period of restrictive freedoms – and was promptly banned by the Iranian government. Written by Samad Behrangi, an outspoken Iranian teacher, author and social critic, his untimely death in 1967 was attributed to the political regime at the time.

The Little Black Fish
The Little Black Fish

Tiny Owl first published an English edition in hardback in 2015 with the original illustrations by Hans Christian Andersen Award winner Farshid Mesghali. His stunning block prints and mixed media backgrounds are as relevant today as they were in the 1960s and provide a visual richness that enchants both adults and children. Now, 50 years after it was first published, we are pleased to announce that a paperback edition will be released on 31 January 2017.

“It’s a book is about freedom, confinement, human possibility. Like all the best picture books, it is both simple and profound. “Perhaps,” says the little black fish, “there is more to life, and perhaps the world is more than our stream!” It’s a message for us all. This is a book that has been read and loved for generations in Iran, and at last the little black fish has swum to our shores.”

David Almond


Buy The Little Black Fish (paperback) here

Buy The Little Black Fish (hardback) here

Buy a limited edition print from The Little Black Fish, signed by the Hans Christian Andersen Award winner Farshid Mesghali

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