Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Oliver and the Seawigs by Philip Reeve, Sarah McIntyre


Have you ever heard of seawigs?  Neither have I, so I had to read this book and see what Mr. Reeve and Ms. McIntyre have created!

Random House Books for Young Readers and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published July 22nd, so you will be able to grab a copy then.

Oliver's parents are explorers.  He's been all over the world, shared exciting adventures, and now he's really glad to be moving home and staying in one place for a while.  That pleasant feeling lasts at least a half hour while he's getting his room into shape.  His parents have gone off to check out the islands in the harbor.  They don't remember them from before, so they're adventuring again.  He gets a bit anxious when they don't return.  Even worse, when he looks out the window, the islands are gone!

This is an inventive, imaginative tale that is great fun to read.  Middle graders should get a real kick out of it!  OK, it is a bit silly but so what?

When Oliver starts out after his parents, he stops on a small island.  There's nothing there to tell him anything until a mostly blind mermaid shows up.  She's looking for the eyeglass doctor on the beach.  He tells her his troubles, she tells him the islands have legs and can walk.  She also introduces him to the island he's standing on.  Oliver names him Cliff.  Cliff tells him the islands have gone to a competition to determine who would be their leader for the next year.  

Oliver and the mermaid help Cliff get a cool hat (for the competition) and they and the albatross take off across the sea.  Along the way, they meet sarcastic seaweed, sea monkeys, and lots of other islands.  The most dangerous one is run by another child who wants control of the sea.  He has Oliver's parents in glass balls and won't let them go.

Oliver is lot more adventurous than I'd ever have been at that age.  It must have been all that travel and exploring.  Still, it takes even more than his heroic efforts to save his parents.

This story keeps your attention and makes you laugh in places.  Everybody lives happily ever after (except maybe the boy who wanted to be king) and there are lessons learned along the way.  It's a good read.  Try it out!

1 comment:

Jo Ann Hakola said...

Sarah and Phillip collaborated on this story, both in illustrations and text. Identifying her as the illustrator alone is incorrect. Sorry for any confusion and I will edit the post now.