18 August 2010


by Jan Ramage, illustrated by Mark Wilson

black dog books. Australian, Picture Book. Hardback rrp $24.99

If you are looking for a picture book for young children that offers a positive message about the environment without pushing the point - I’ve found it. Stranded is based on a true story of a young boy who helped save the lives of many whales.

Ben lives near the ocean. He fishes and understands the creatures surrounding his town. When he notices his dog acting weirdly and hears strange sounds, he knows exactly what to do.

Over 100 whales are stranded on Ben’s beach. The locals and the authorities come to the rescue. Ben notices a baby whale and spends all day trying to prevent the whale from beaching itself. Over the next 24 hours, the townsfolk work together to help save the whales, including Ben’s small baby.

With eerily poetic illustrations, Mark Wilson has brought the ocean and the community together. The picture of Ben trying so hard to keep the baby whale afloat, whilst he thrashes the water across the page, was so realistic I was tempted to brush the pages to dry them.

Stranded is a book that children will love to read and look at time and time again.

The Reading Stack reviewed Mark Wilson’s My Mothers Eyes and Journey of the Sea Turtle in March and June 2009 respectively.


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