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A Whale of the Wild

af Rosanne Parry

Andre forfattere: Lindsay Moore (Illustrator)

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392504,142 (3.67)Ingen
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Rosanne Parry returns to animal fiction in this gripping story of two young orcas who must find their way after a series of tragedies separate them from their pod. Used to following her Greatmother, who is the wayfinder for their group, Vega nevertheless has some potential as a wayfinder herself. Grieving the death of her newborn sister, Capella, she leaves her family pod in anger, determined to take the baby's remains to a special spot. Her younger brother Deneb follows after her, determined to bring her back to the family. While thus separated from the larger group, a terrible undersea earthquake occurs, and together with much of the marine life of the Salish Sea, Vega and Deneb head desperately for the safety of the open ocean, where the depths will provide them a refuge from the destructive waves that are coming. Having endured this natural disaster, the siblings must find a way to survive going forward, and Vega takes her place as the wayfinder. But can she find the salmon that she and her brother need to survive? And will they ever be reunited with their family...?

I absolutely loved Parry's A Wolf Called Wander, about the lonely journey of a wolf whose pack had been attacked and dispersed, and who traveled the Oregon wilderness, looking for a new home and family, so I picked up A Whale of the Wild with a great deal of anticipation. That anticipation was made all the keener by the fact that it was illustrated by Lindsay Moore, whose picture-book, Sea Bear: A Journey for Survival, I found both beautiful and moving. Happily, I was not disappointed on either score, finding the story here immensely engaging, and the artwork simply lovely. There were moments of great sadness in the story, and moments of wonder as well, and Parry did an excellent job capturing the perspectives of Vega and Deneb throughout their many experiences, incorporating interesting information about orcas - the fact that they share food in their pods, or that they never attack humans - into her text in a natural way. I found myself utterly engrossed in this tale, hoping against hope that the pair would find the rest of their family, and overjoyed at every success they experienced. The dangers of life in the wild - some natural, some manmade - make the story more suspenseful as well, and I was so relieved when, having found Aquila and Altair, Vega was able to lead them to salmon in time to save the former from the hunger sickness. I was also struck by the scene in which Vega and her brother work with the humans on shore, to restore the river where the salmon spawn, and came away wondering if there were real-life human/orca interactions that might have inspired that part of the story. As mentioned, the artwork was absolutely gorgeous, capturing the beauty of the orcas and the world around them, and making the reading process far more pleasurable. The detailed afterword gives more information about orcas and their world, and offers children concrete steps they can take, in helping to preserve and protect our natural world, and help the orcas.

All in all, a delightful, moving, educational and inspiring book, one I would recommend to all middle-grade readers (or readers of middle-grade fiction) who enjoy animal stories, or who appreciate tales with unusual and unexpected perspectives. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Mar 22, 2021 |
Vega and Deneb are sibling orca whales of the Salish Sea. They come from a long matrilineal line of orcas. There is much affection and support among the family members, as well as a knowledge of the area's long history. They are also painfully aware of the changes taking place: a lack of salmon, noisy boats that interfere with their echolocation, and pollution. A devastating earthquake and tsunami upend their familiar places, and Vega and Deneb find themselves separated from their family. Vega, as a wayfinder, is put to the test to figure out where they are, find food and reunite with their family. This is an appealing portrayal of the orcas as intelligent social animals in the fight for their lives. It is also a cautionary tale of the need to save and protect the environment and the web of life. Extensive backmatter describes the southern resident killer whale community; provides information about orcas and wildlife of the area and the Native tribes; and explains the challenges facing the Salish Sea. A book to inspire young environmentalists and animal lovers. ( )
1 stem Salsabrarian | Dec 23, 2020 |
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Rosanne Parryprimær forfatteralle udgaverberegnet
Moore, LindsayIllustratormedforfatteralle udgaverbekræftet
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