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Big Blue
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Kye knows everything there is to know about whales, and dreams of swimming with a blue whale. When she travels to Mexico with her mother, Kye is closer to her goal than ever. Will her wish of swimming with Big Blue come true?

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Gr 1-3-While it seems unlikely that a child could actually fulfill a dream of swimming in the ocean alongside a blue whale, this story is evidently based on an event that really did happen to the author's nine-year-old daughter. Kye narrates, telling readers that she knows "just about everything a kid can know about whales." She goes on to explain many facts about their size and bodies. Kye's mother facilitates her daughter's dream. "My mom- drives a whale-research boat in Alaska. She hangs out with marine biologists." Soon they are part of a small research trek to Baja, Mexico, where the dream is realized. "Time stops. This moment belongs to Big Blue and me. I twirl like a manta ray in her surge, dancing in the depths of her deep, blue sea." Watercolor and colored-pencil views covering the full spreads provide fine perspective in scenes of a whale skeleton suspended from a museum ceiling and children and whales swimming underwater. More adept at drawing landscapes and animals than humans, Barrow creates a good sense of place as she depicts the child at home, the trip by Jeep to the study camp in Mexico, and the undulating figure of the impressive whale. The possibility of an ordinary child living out such a grand dream makes for a nice adventure story, and the book adeptly blends considerable information about whales into the telling. Children will enjoy the package for personal reading, and it should find good use in classrooms as well.-Margaret Bush, Simmons College, Boston Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

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