Life on a remote Maine island can be frustrating for a typical kid who misses the conveniences that mainland residents take for granted.
Riley has to eat dry cereal since the delivery plane bringing the milk is delayed due to bad weather, but even worse, his upcoming birthday will be a bust, as his birthday gifts and surprises will be late. He wishes he could have a “normal birthday, with a bunch of kids my age and presents from a toy store.” But island life, although unpredictable, has other compensations: wild, uncrowded beaches, sparkling ocean water for swimming, interesting wildlife, and a small community of friendly, unconventional people with plenty of leisure time and a willingness to share their lives and occupations with the boy. Finally the plane arrives, along with Riley’s birthday package, and the resulting impromptu birthday party, attended by the whole island, is well worth the wait. Writing directly from her own experiences as a longtime resident of Maine’s Matinicus Island, island pilot, and teacher in the island’s one-room schoolhouse, Murray speaks with the ring of authenticity. Hogan's lively, brightly colored pastel illustrations bring the distinctive island setting to life.
This book engagingly invites young readers to explore a different lifestyle from a child’s perspective. (Picture book. 5-8)