THEY SWIM THE SEAS

THE MYSTERY OF ANIMAL MIGRATION

In a companion book to Ride the Wind (1997), Simon (see review, above) turns his attention to the migratory habits of marine plankton, plants, fish, and mammals. From alga called spirogyra, spread by moving currents, to the nesting patterns of sea turtles to the great gray whale’s legendary 4,000-mile trek from Baja to the Bering Sea, Simon astounds readers with the marvels of migration. The author poses questions to which the answers can’t be known, but curious readers may find themselves frustrated, wanting to know how scientists manage to study tuna traveling three times faster than the boat from which they’re observed. Lilting, liquid watercolors in all the gray-greens of the sea majestically portray barnacle-dappled whales, rushing salmon, or marching spiny lobster. A rougher fit with the picture-book format is the book’s continuous narrative, without organizational headings and with additional information about each migrator appearing in a five-page addendum titled, “More About Ocean Journeys.” Still, Simon and Warnick beautifully succeed in capturing the wonder of the migratory process. (Picture book. 7-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-15-292888-X

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A dramatic, educational, authentic whale of a tale.

A WHALE OF THE WILD

After a tsunami devastates their habitat in the Salish Sea, a young orca and her brother embark on a remarkable adventure.

Vega’s matriarchal family expects her to become a hunter and wayfinder, with her younger brother, Deneb, protecting and supporting her. Invited to guide her family to their Gathering Place to hunt salmon, Vega’s underwater miscalculations endanger them all, and an embarrassed Vega questions whether she should be a wayfinder. When the baby sister she hoped would become her life companion is stillborn, a distraught Vega carries the baby away to a special resting place, shocking her grieving family. Dispatched to find his missing sister, Deneb locates Vega in the midst of a terrible tsunami. To escape the waters polluted by shattered boats, Vega leads Deneb into unfamiliar open sea. Alone and hungry, the young siblings encounter a spectacular giant whale and travel briefly with shark-hunting orcas. Trusting her instincts and gaining emotional strength from contemplating the vastness of the sky, Vega knows she must lead her brother home and help save her surviving family. In alternating first-person voices, Vega and Deneb tell their harrowing story, engaging young readers while educating them about the marine ecosystem. Realistic black-and-white illustrations enhance the maritime setting.

A dramatic, educational, authentic whale of a tale. (maps, wildlife facts, tribes of the Salish Sea watershed, environmental and geographical information, how to help orcas, author’s note, artist’s note, resources) (Animal fiction. 8-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-299592-6

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Review Posted Online: July 1, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

MR. POPPER'S PENGUINS

This is rather a silly story, and I don't believe children will think it particularly funny. A paper hanger and painter finds time on his hands in winter, and spends it in reading of arctic exploration. It is all given reality when he receives a present of a penguin, which makes its nest in the refrigerator on cubes of ice, mates with a lonely penguin from the zoo, and produces a family of penguins which help set the Poppers on their feet.

Pub Date: Sept. 26, 1938

ISBN: 978-0-316-05843-8

Page Count: 139

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1938

Did you like this book?

more