ORPHEUS BLACK | Julian Sedgwick

Voyages in the underworld of orpheus black
Shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal 2020

Shortlisted for the 2020 Carnegie Medal

"A stunning work of art, both strange and haunting." The Scotsman

Written with Marcus Sedgwick and illustrated by Alexis Deacon
Walker Books 2019

An illustrated novel about brothers lost in in a world of war and myth.

See the trailer below, and the image gallery HERE.

In late December 1944 conscientious objector and artist Harry Black is working as a fireman as V1 and V2 rockets rain down on London. Keen to heal a divide between him and his brother Ellis, Harry is working on an illustrated book called Warriors of the Machine - his heartfelt reaction to the war. But when a V2 rocket injures him, and buries his brother, Harry must embark on a quest deep into the subterranean passages beneath the city. His grip on reality loosened by a head wound and morphine, Harry starts to drift between worlds...

Six years in the making (as they say) and a labour of love for all involved, Orpheus Black is a deeply personal reflection on war, sibling-hood, pacifism, and what kind of society we want to create. Every age tells its own versions of he Orpheus myth, and - with Alexis' amazing illustration work, and the design team at Walker UK - this is ours.


Marcus, Julian and Alexis at the Imperial War Museum, London. 2019