Our Winning Book Synopsis
Our 2021 Giverny Award winner follows the story of Little Turtle and her ocean home. Within the story and vivid illustrations, readers swim alongside Little Turtle within a colorful ocean, then a polluted one, and finally a restored environment.
Little Turtle’s journey begins after she hatches on a sandy beach during a thunderstorm. She encounters the ocean, tossing and turning, for the first time. Traveling within a warm current, our small heroine finds a safe hideaway in colorful waters with seagrass and brilliant fish. When she outgrows her home, Little Turtle next travels across the ocean’s open water to the other side of the world, meeting new turtles and fish along the way.
Each year, Little Turtle swims across the ocean, back to the beach where she was born. Each year, she makes new friends and welcomes baby turtles.
One year, the ocean is different. Little Turtle swims through plastic bags and bottles. The trash becomes more abundant, and the ocean colors disappear. Little Turtle finds herself trapped within a discarded fishing net!
Just when Little Turtle is ready to give up, two people arrive to free her. The people help her friends and begin cleaning up the plastic garbage in the ocean. The colorful fish and seagrass return to Little Turtle’s ocean home.
Little Turtle and the Changing Sea addresses multiple science concepts, including the life cycle of a turtle and ocean biodiversity. At its core, the story probes plastic waste and human impact on the ocean. This book clearly demonstrates how garbage negatively impacts sea life, but also offers a positive message that humans can correct some of the issues that plastic waste created. Resource pages at the end of the storybook provide further information about plastic pollution and the Great Garbage Patch.
Our 2021 Giverny book is written by Becky Davies, author of several children’s books and an editor at Little Tiger Press. Artist Jennie Poh is a freelance illustrator and author who primarily creates artworks digitally. Poh’s art effectively transitions from a healthy, vivid ocean to a somber environment populated by ghostly plastic bags adrift in the water. The author/illustrator team is from England.
We suspect our youngest readers will enjoy the story of Little Turtle, and be inspired to consider plastic use, and misuse, in their lives.