Monday, October 12, 2020

 SWASHBY AND THE SEA by Beth Ferry. Illus. by Juana Martinez-Neal.  New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2020 32p. ISBN 978-0-544707375 hc. $17.99     Gr. K-2     E PIC

Captain Swashby finally retired to the beach, after spending a lifetime at sea.  He planned a peaceful retirement there - just him and the ocean.  That plan was interrupted by new neighbors who set up their beach umbrellas and toys on the beach next to his dock.  He wrote unwelcoming messages in the sand to scare them off, but the waves washed away some of the letters and transformed the unkind words into fun phrases.  The neighbors were convinced that Swashby was a great guy.  It took an emergency to make Swashby realize that it might not be so bad to have friends.  Although the book is smaller than a normal picture book, the illustrations have soft and textured backgrounds with distinctive, expressive main characters that let readers know exactly what they're thinking.

Lynette Suckow, Superiorland Preview Center, Marquette, MI

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