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Not Quite Narwhal

Illustrated by Jessie Sima
LIST PRICE $17.99

In the tradition of Uni the Unicorn and Gaston, this heartwarming and adorable debut picture book tells the story of a young unicorn who was born under the sea to a family of narwhals.

Growing up in the ocean, Kelp has always assumed that he was a narwhal like the rest of his family. Sure, he’s always been a little bit different—his tusk isn’t as long, he’s not as good of a swimmer, and he really doesn’t enjoy the cuisine. Then one night, an extra strong current sweeps Kelp to the surface, where he spots a mysterious creature that looks just like him! Kelp discovers that he and the creature are actually unicorns. The revelation leaves him torn: is he a land narwhal or a sea unicorn? But perhaps, if Kelp is clever, he may find a way to have the best of both worlds.

Told with heartwarming illustrations and spare, sweet text, Jessie Sima’s debut picture book is about fitting in, standing out, and the all-encompassing love of family.

Courtesy of Tory Williams

Jessie Sima is an author/illustrator living and working in New York City. She grew up in a small town in southern New Jersey, unaware that she was a storyteller. Once she figured it out, she told her family and friends. They took it quite well. She is the author of Not Quite NarwhalHarriet Gets Carried AwayLove, ZSnow Pony and the Seven Miniature PoniesSpencer’s New Pet; Jules vs. the Ocean; and Hardly Haunted. You can visit her at JessieSima.com.

Courtesy of Tory Williams

Jessie Sima is an author/illustrator living and working in New York City. She grew up in a small town in southern New Jersey, unaware that she was a storyteller. Once she figured it out, she told her family and friends. They took it quite well. She is the author of Not Quite NarwhalHarriet Gets Carried AwayLove, ZSnow Pony and the Seven Miniature PoniesSpencer’s New Pet; Jules vs. the Ocean; and Hardly Haunted. You can visit her at JessieSima.com.

"The message is an appealing one that could speak to many family situations relating to multiple identities...feel-good story"

– Kirkus Reviews, November 15, 2016

"Adorable characters trigger smiles throughout"

– Publisher's Weekly, December 2016

"A storyteller’s pacing and winning characters, resulting in an appealing book. Read it for a whimsical storytime or provide some text-to-text connections for older students with Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s Uni the Unicorn and Bob Shea’s Unicorn Thinks He’s Pretty Great....this title is highly recommended."

– School Library Journal, January 2017

"Swap the tired Ugly Duckling for this delightfully absurd tale of knowing who you are and where you came from."

– Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, January 2017

"Sima’s bubbly, adorable artwork is nearly irresistible...This endearing tale will warm many a heart."

– Booklist, January 2017

"This book is painfully adorable...The story is about finding your own way to belong,..It's just beautiful.”

– Shelf Awareness Pro, January 24, 2017

  • CCBC Choices (Cooperative Children's Book Council)
  • Georgia Children's Book Award
  • Buckeye Children's Book Award (OH)
  • Georgia Children's Book Award Finalist
  • Ladybug Award (NH)
  • Wisconsin State Reading Association's Reading List
  • Black-Eyed Susan Book Award Nominee (MD)
  • Beehive Award Nominee

More books from this author: Jessie Sima