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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

The Marlin and the Mermaid | Daniel R. Ford

Genre: Children’s Picture Book 
Location: Coastal Virginia — Chesapeake Bay

The Marlin and the Mermaid “Help Save the Chesapeake Bay” follows a marlin and a mermaid through the sea as they discover pollution destroying the bay. For a complete summary, you can go here.


For me, the best part of this book is the story behind the story. So I live near the same area, so I like that I can relate to the location—and I know that kids would love that too. So obviously this book’s biggest draw is its own local community. In coastal Virginia, mermaids are all over the place. No, not real mermaids, but women (and some men) dressed up like mermaids. You can hire them to come to social events. They sometimes even bring their own large water tank to swim around in. Well, Ford has local mermaids read this book to kids in libraries and schools. That alone is pretty amazing publicity, in my opinion. 

The other amazing part about this story is that the pictures are all watercolors illustrations by a father-daughter duo. As someone who eventually wants to write a children’s book with her dad, I can appreciate this collaboration. 

I love any children’s book that has a deeper meaning and teaches children how to help protect the environment. My only real complaint is aesthetic. I really don’t like the font in the book. I understand that that font is easier for kids to read, but it takes away from the beautiful paintings. The font is the type of font that kindergarteners and first graders would read, but the text is for a more advanced reader, so the large sans serif font isn’t necessary. 

I was also confused by some of the prose. There was a good flow for the most part, with every other sentence rhyming, but then the pattern would switch and a few times the rhyming pattern disappeared. If this book is being read aloud a lot, then the writing should flow better. 

Overall, the book has a good message and I appreciate what the author is doing to teach children about not littering and protecting the environment. I also like that he included a glossary and other links to helpful resources. That really amps up the quality of an informational children’s book. If you are interested in buying the book, you can buy it here. After you have read it, leave a comment and let me know what you think! 

4/5 Stars

*****

o Amber Gregg o


*Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the author, but it did not impact my review in any way.*