Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 3 to 5
- Grade: p to k
- Reading age: 3 to 5
This gorgeously illustrated picture book is a celebration of summer vacation and West Coast island life. Every day is different on Gran's island in the Salish Sea as granddaughter climbs big-leaf maples, eats blackberries, explores tide pools and sandstone caves and examines ancient middens and petroglyphs. She and Gran watch harbor seals sunning themselves and Gran's neighbor carving an eagle out of a piece of cedar while drinking fresh nettle tea. And on her way home, our young narrator sees a pod of orcas, breaching, tail lobbing and spy-hopping as she says goodbye to the island for another summer.
About the authors
Sheryl McFarlane was born in the Ottawa Valley and was raised in Arizona, but the west coast snatched her heart more than thirty years ago. She is the mother of three wonderful daughters who often appear in her books in disguised form. She is the author of four board books and eight picture books, including: A Pod of Orcas, This is the Dog, Jessie's Island and Waiting for the Whales.
Sheryl's books have won and been short-listed for several readers' choice awards, the Governor General's Award, the IODE Award, the BC Book Prize for Children's Literature, and the Mr. Christie Award. Sheryl has toured with the Peter Gzowski Golf Tournament for Literacy, Save the Children, and The Canada Council. She has judged creative writing for The Writer's Union of Canada, The Canadian Children's Book Centre, and the BC Creative Writers' Grant Program, been a writer in residence in many schools, been involved in many young author programs, and has led children's writing workshops for beginning and established writers.
A former teacher, Sheryl provides professional development in language arts for school districts, Early Childhood Educators, Primary Educator Associations and the International Reading Association. She frequently acts as a consultant for publishers on both educational and trade projects. Her first young adult novel was published in the fall of 2006.
- Short-listed, Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Award
- Commended, CCBC Best Books for Kids & Teens
"A good addition to a public or primary school library collection for a quiet read-aloud as an introduction to summer. It is a fine depiction of coastal life, but it also evokes warm feelings of family."
CM: Canadian Review of Materials
"Lovely, atmospheric watercolor illustrations show the girl and her grandmother spending idyllic weeks together exploring the beach…The story unfolds with a calm, peaceful tone…An informative and entertaining tale of an intriguing location and a warm family relationship."
“[A] colourful, beautifully illustrated picture book…A great addition to a classroom collection”
"A gentle and delightful way to introduce young readers to life on an interior coastal island and also explore an indigenous way of life in the Salish Sea. Highly recommended for public, personal and school libraries."