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Blowholes and Blubber: The Wild and Wonderful World of Whales


Reviewed by Debbie Glade

My husband’s fascination with whales has made me to want to learn more about these amazing creatures myself. Fortunately A Tale of Wild Orcas: Granny’s Clan ($8.95, Dawn Publications, Ages 5-9), a book about a large family of orcas, led by a 100-year-old granny, was just waiting for me to read.

What you will first notice about this book are the big, bold and beautiful pastel illustrations by artist Ann Jones who lives on Orca Island in the state of Washington. Her ability to capture the Orcas’ realistic movement in the water is impressive.

This book is based upon actual research conducted on killer whales, and the story is a true one of an actual family of whales, written by whale expert, Dr. Sally Hodson. Readers learn how the family of whales travels together, what they see when they swim through the sea and all about the sounds they make – sonar clicks and echoed calls. They will also learn about how Orcas hunt for food, what they eat and how they steer clear of potential danger.

In the back of the book is information about the real family of whales this book is based upon as well as intriguing, vital information about this species of whale and resources for learning more. Dawn Publications offers a collection of downloadable free activities for teaching with this book. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it, and I’m sure there are many teachers and students out there who can appreciate it as much as I do.

For another great children’s book about the sea, read our interview with Sophie Webb, author of Far From Shore.

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