Summer Gillett, Beneath the Turquoise Waters, JoJo Publishing, 1 Sept 2015, 32pp., $16.99 (pbk). ISBN 9780994183897
What immediately grabs your attention with this book, are the vibrant greens and blues of the seas and the swirling golds of the beach and ocean floor. This is a richly illustrated book, which instantly invites you into the lush tropical home of the dugongs and sea turtles at the heart of this story. It tells of a mother dugong and sea turtle, who both give birth, as their mothers did before them, and follows the babies as they grow and do the same. The simplicity of the story is part of its charm, though I couldn’t help but want more, as the story lacked any dramatic tension. There are many dangers that face the birth of both animals and their growth, from environmental destruction, to natural disasters, the impact of humans and natural predators, but none of this is mentioned and the animals are left untouched by any peril. With the natural element of story complication, this could have been a really wonderful book.
Reviewed by Deborah Abela