Looking for mermaid stories for children? The Mermaid Who Came to School is available as an audiobook, ebook and paperback. A friendship story for kids with funny bits and a mysterious twist. Ideal in schools for World Book Day.

The Mermaid Who Came to School

A funny thing happened on World Book Day

Written and illustrated by Moira Munro



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The mermaid who came to school - A funny thing happened on World Book Day

Do mermaids really risk it all?

What can you do if you’re a lonely mermaid, you long for friends, and the only school is on dry land? Leena’s dad has warned her that humans are dangerous, but on World Book Day, when all the children are dressed up as storybook characters, Leena grabs her chance. But with her new best friend asking questions, the Head demanding to meet Leena’s parents, and loud-mouthed bully Trandulah spying on her, how long can Leena keep her secret?

Who's it for?

Around thirty minutes of read-aloud fun, mystery and danger, for children aged five or six upwards. 

Inside illustrations break up the text to help children enjoy reading for themselves. If your children are into eBooks, the pictures will show up in colour or black and white, depending on their device.

Listen to the beginning of the audiobook

Buy The Mermaid Who Came to School

The story with my illustrations is available in a wide range of eBook formats, and in paperbacks with either black and white or colour illustrations.

The ebook illustrations are in colour, so if you have a colour ebook reader, you should be in for a treat. Otherwise the black & white shows up fine too.

If you're a US customer:

Black and white version Colour version


If you're a UK customer:

Black and white version Colour version


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A spread from the colour paperback version of The Mermaid Who Came to School

Above: a sample from the colour paperback version of "The Mermaid who Came to School".

You can also read the first version of the story in the collection "Mermaid Stories", illustrated by Lara Jones, published by Macmillan. It's edited by Emma Young and includes stories by Philip Ardagh, Anna Wilson, Jane Ray, Fiona Dunbar, Vic Parker and Ian Billings.

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Author visits

See here for my "Puppies, Mermaids and Meanies" sessions based around this story.

Dressing up as a mermaid: children's book Girl story with friendship and bullying: The Mermaid who Came to School The bully in school (remiscent of race discrimination) - childrens story

Comments and wall display from pupils at Port Ellen Primary school, Isle of Islay

Mermaid stories - brilliant preparation for author visit in Port Ellen Primary school

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The story of the cover

I'm never one to go for the easy option. If I'm doing a cover I do about a million roughs. Here are some of them.

My first rough. Rather old-fashioned, hmm? Reminds me of adventure stories for kids I used to read. Maybe that's a good thing.

Adventure stories for kids

So let's try something more designery. And some pink, can't go wrong with pink. Being a feminist these days is mighty impossible. And does pink make it only a girl story? Will a boy read a story with "Mermaid" in the title?

Girl stories - must they be pink

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How about this one below? It's supposed to be a whiteboard. OK I hate it. Should I keep tweaking, or return to the fishtail design?

I'm mindful the cover has to be easy to see for people looking for children's stories online.

World Book Day: kids are dressed up as storybook characters in this childrens story

Back to the fishtail. I spent a long time on this. I like it.

Two girls on a mermaid tail for this children's story, available as eBook or paperback

EVERYONE likes the fishtail design. Except the girl next door. She said it looks "weird" and she likes my very first rough. The one I was sure was horribly old-fashioned. Arghh!

The mermaid who came to school: feedback from school - a funny thing happened on World Book Day

This is my final design. I think. I had fun with foam and splashes.

Time will tell if it appeals to children, but meanwhile, I'm happy it looks fine as a small thumbnail on online bookstores.

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