Cover image for High and dry
High and dry
Physical Description:
85 pages ; 20 cm.
Added Author:
In this illustrated early chapter book, a young boy and his grandfather work together to save a beached orca. --


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Dylan lives on a remote island in the Pacific Northwest with his parents, but when they have to go to the mainland, his grandfather weathers a storm to come spend time with him. Grandpa's brought Dylan a number of gifts, and one comes in handy the next day while they are exploring the coast. In fact, this gift leads the duo to a dangerous discovery: a young orca got stuck on the rocks during the storm. Racing against the sun and the heat, Dylan and Grandpa need to work together to figure out how to save the calf while his pod circles nearby.

Reviews 2

School Library Journal Review

Gr 2--4--Dylan, who is living on a remote island with his parents, has an opportunity to explore the wildlife of his temporary home. Although lonely, he is learning so much about nature and the consequences of his actions. During a storm, a small orca whale is separated from his pod and is beached during low tide. When Dylan becomes aware of the young orca's situation, he is determined to help. He knows that the whale needs moisture and protection from the hot sun until the tide comes back in. He endeavors to keep the whale wet and covered with blankets so that it doesn't dehydrate or burn. For 10 hours, Dylan works tirelessly to protect the displaced mammal. Over the course of their time together, a bond forms between the boy and the orca. Walters draws readers in by expertly describing the storm, the whale's struggle, and Dylan's determination to save the stranded animal. Using simple terms and uncomplicated dialogue, the story will engage even the most reluctant reader. With educational information about orcas interspersed throughout, this is a well-written tale that deftly incorporates a lesson about marine life and nature. VERDICT Walters has woven a touching story about the connection humans have with other living beings on Earth. Recommended for wide purchase.--Davia Schmidt, Queens Public Library, NY

Kirkus Review

A sensitive young boy's act of bravery saves the life of a beached orca.Lonely now that the summer's over and the vacationers have left the isolated island his family has recently moved to, Dylan will spend the winter being home-schooled by his artist parents. He misses friends, recess, and gym, but he enjoys walking the island's shoreline, kayaking, and watching the pod of orcas that lives nearby. While exploring the beach with his grandfather, he notices that the orca pod is distressed, and they find a young pod member stranded on some rocks in an inlet with the tide going out. Thanks to resourceful thinking and bravery on Dylan's part, they keep the young orca from drying out and being harmed until it is high tide again and he can be floated back to sea and his pod. The natural world predominates the narrative, and scientific information is seamlessly woven in. Accessible for transitioning readers and graced with the occasional grayscale illustration, the book offers fast-paced action and tension surrounding the whale's fateboth will keep readers invested. Dylan and his mom appear to have darker skin than his dad, but race is indeterminable. Dylan's rural setting shows how isolation can come in many forms, a feeling many readers will understand.A page-turning transitional chapter book with a satisfying ending. (Fiction. 6-9) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.