Friday, February 12, 2010

Last Book I Loved: Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell

Here's a new series on Big Blue Marble Bookstore's Blog. Last Book I Loved will profile books that community and neighborhood teachers, neighbors, artists, writers, and all kinds of other folks read recently and loved. Our first profile is by the talented Claire McConnell... and please be sure to check out her creative speech workshops (including the one starting on February 19th!)

The last book I loved was Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell, published in 1960. Karana's tribe leaves her Pacific Island home and she must survive there alone. She learns how to build a house, how to make weapons to fight off the wild dogs, how to catch an octopus, and makes a number of surprising friends in lieu of human companionship. Like the Little House books, it's for children and it's about 'roughing it', the basic skills for living on the earth. You really learn to love the island, all the textures and colors and worlds within it, even while pining for human contact along with Karana. I would recommend this book to children around age 9 and to grown ups too!

Claire McConnell is writing an island novel. She is an assistant pre-school teacher at the Waldorf School of Philadelphia (across the street from the Trolley Car Diner). She also teaches Creative Speech-- the arts of storytelling, poetry reciting, and acting based on the work of Rudolf Steiner-- and will teach an intro workshop on February 19th at the Philadelphia Dance Theater, 10am to 3pm (More info at Creative Speech Philadelphia.)

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