The Illustrated Child

A picture paints a thousand lies…

‘Evocative and enchanting – a future classic’ Veronica Henry
‘An extraordinary debut… beautiful, dark, haunting’ Edward Carey
‘A captivating coming-of-age story… dripping with atmosphere’ Daily Mail
‘A bewitching read’ Woman & Home

Romilly lives in a ramshackle house with her eccentric artist father and her cat, Monty. She knows little about her past – but she knows that she is loved.

When her father finds fame with a series of children’s books starring her as the main character, everything changes: exotic foods appear on the table, her father appears on TV, and strangers appear at their door, convinced the books contain a treasure hunt leading to a glittering prize.

But as time passes, Romilly’s father becomes increasingly suspicious of everything around him, until, before her eyes, he begins to disappear altogether.

In her increasingly isolated world, Romilly turns to the secrets her father has hidden in his illustrated books, realising that there is something far darker and more devastating locked within the pages…

The truth.

The Illustrated Child is the unforgettable, beguiling debut from Polly Crosby.

Praise for The Illustrated Child:

‘Evocative and enchanting – a future classic and a star in the making’ Veronica Henry

‘An extraordinary debut… beautiful, dark, haunting and unforgettable. I loved it’ Edward Carey

‘A captivating coming-of-age story with memorable characters beautifully brought to life in a setting dripping with atmosphere’ Daily Mail

‘Part fantasy, part coming of age, the undercurrents of child neglect and mental ill health pull at you all the way through this poignant tale’ Heat

‘A bewitching read’ Woman & Home

‘Written in fine, delicate prose, this treasure of a debut takes up the palette of emotions and paints with all the colours. Beautiful’ Nydia Hetherington

‘Exquisitely written, stunning, totally unique. Everyone needs to read this’ Jessica Ryn

‘A magical tale, beautifully written, evocative and mysterious, and stitched through with a dark thread that I wasn’t expecting. What a wonderful book’ Anita Frank

‘A beautifully written tale that evokes dreams and imagination’ Daily Record