'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Friday 25 June 2010

Review: Turtle's Song

Title: Turtle’s Song

Author: Alan Brown

Illustrator: Kim Michelle Toft

Publisher: University of Queensland Press, A$19.95RRP

Format: Softcover

ISBN: 9780702232190

For ages: 4-8

Type: Picture Book

About: Turtle’s Song is a visually splendid book – a collection of Toft’s stunning silk paintings encapture the brightest scapes of the underwater world, resplendant with coral, tropical fish and foaming waves.

The paintings fill each page to capacity, and children will revel in exploring the delicate detail, from microscopic grains of sand to hungry sharks, cruising for a bite.

The book follows the life cycle of the sea turtle, from hatchling to elderly ocean veteran, and author Brown takes us on a harrowing journey as our turtle navigates the perilous sea – from the fraught trip of the hatchling across the gull-swooping, crab crunching sand, to the terrifying travails of shark and fish avoidance in the surf – it’s a wonder a single turtle makes it to open water, let alone old age!

But make it, our heroine does. As she lives and thrives in the deep ocean, turtle soon returns to her birthplace to lay her own eggs, and so begins the turtle life cycle once again.

Brown writes beautiful, evocative prose that is a delight to read to children aloud, however, the rounding off of each page with a ‘run, little turtle, run!’ and ‘swim, big turtle, swim!’ is superfluous and detracts from the fluid motion of the main text.

Nonetheless, this is a gorgeous book that will enchant animal lovers. Included is a quite comprehensive look at the various types of sea turtle (over 200 types of turtle are in existence, yet only seven species of sea turtle have survived) and a fascinating set of turtle facts and environmental information, making this a wonderful resource for libraries and schools.

Author website

Illustrator website

This book can be bought online