Rosanne Hawke

Windy Hollow Books

Illustrated by Elizabeth Stanley

On the stair-steppe far away in Pakistan lives a girl of the Kalasha people who yearns for a snow leopard. Shazia’s dream comes true when she finds a lost cub in the forest. She names it Yardil, friend of my heart. But the villagers are troubled. Will their goats be safe when Yardil grows up?

Shazia’s father defends her. The leopard, he says, has been sent for a special purpose. It’s not long before the villagers discover what that purpose is.

Elizabeth Stanley’s charcoal illustrations with their occasional splashes of bright colour deftly evoke the harshness of mountain life on the northern frontier of Pakistan. The slate grey colouring brings out the silence of the steppe and the wild isolation of the mountain beyond the walnut grove.

However it also tinges the story with a brooding, almost sombre cast, overshadowing the lightness of spirit which comes to Shazia when she finally realises Yardil will always be a friend of her heart.

1 Comment

  1. Wendy Sargeant

    You have enticed me to read this, Annie.:-)

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