A Garden of Whales
Recipient of The Vermont Publishers Association Certificate of Merit
In his bath one night a boy begins to dream about living in the sea with the whales that he loves. But there is trouble in his dream; the whales are in grave danger and he must devise a plan to bring them back into the ocean. With friends from “all the world over,” the boy calls on the ghosts of the whales to rain down their tears on a secret whale garden where families of whales are reborn. Then, “in the dark of the night when the time was just right,” the children help “put them back into the sea.”
Reviews and Comments
“I remember as a child being fascinated with whales - their size, their sounds, their images as rulers of the sea. It’s a fascination that has never left me.
I wish I could have had A Garden of Whales, a wonderful new children’s book by Maggie Steincrohn Davis of Blue Hill, to share with my daughters as they were growing up. In simple language, with stunningly beautiful illustrations by Jennifer Barrett O’Connell, the book gently delivers to children the important message that this magnificent and endangered species must be protected and preserved before it is too late....”
-Hugh Bowden, Ellsworth American
“...Like a contemporary “Kubla Kahn” for kids, this fantasy appears to rise directly from a dream. Its surrender of logic clears, rather than obscures, the vision and leads readers to the book’s heart – the Eskimo folk belief that we and the whales are one and the same. With her effulgent oil pastel illustrations O’Connell fully enters Davis’s dream and strikingly echoes the fluent reverie. This is a bedtime read-aloud that will set heads nodding.”
“As a mother of a three year-old who loves whales, I have to say that this is the pinnacle of his whale book collection. Humpbacks, grays, belugas, killers, fins, rights, bowheads, narwhals and even dolphins are all represented in a breathtakingly beautiful dreamy story of whales and the children who love them. Evenly matched with the prose is the awe-inspiring illustration. Wow. This is just a beautiful book that you and your children will love. I read it twice to my son right out of the box and got choked up each time when I read about the children hatching a plan to regrow all of the whales that man has killed...
...Even if your children don’t love whales yet...they will after reading this book.”