Monday, July 28, 2008

Monday's green books series: Templeton Turtle Goes Exploring (+ free book giveaway)

Today our hero is a young turtle named Templeton. He's young, curious and looking for adventures. He is also the main character in the new children book 'Templeton Turtle Goes Exploring' by Ron Pridmore and Michele-lee Phelan.

I always liked turtles. I didn't have one as a child, but I always admired them when I accidentally found one in the fields, hiding in their shells from the outside world. Our guy, Templeton, is the total opposite: he was just born and is already looking to explore the neighbourhood, which is the big pond in his case.

Templeton is interested in getting to know better the big pond and in making new friends. The story follows his journey around the pond and his encounters with other animals there. I don't want to talk much about the journey, not to ruin it for those who want to read the story. Nevertheless, I can assure you that the journey is full with excitement, joy, disappointment, friendship, fun and all the other great stuff adventures are made of.

The book has an interesting story behind it. Author Ron Pridmore, who grew up in the countryside of California where his love for the outdoors was developed, had one night a dream about a newly-hatched turtle. The next morning, as he recounted the events in his dream, Pridmore grabbed a cup of coffee and quickly wrote down the vivid image and story that filled his head and the story was born.

One part that makes it a great book for children (it's for 4-8 year old kids) is the beautiful illustrations made by the Australian artist Michele-lee Phelan, who has painted the covers of several fantasy novels and is working on her first art book. She did a beautiful job here with the wild animals and especially with our friend Templeton!

If you're asking what's green about this book, my answer would be that this is a story that encourages children to go outdoors, connect with nature, explore it, be curious about their surroundings and leave their computer and room once in a while to see what's going on outside. I believe the connection with nature and the appreciation of wildlife and outdoors are very important for children and have a significant part in their early green/environmental education.

This book also adds the part about the importance of community, which is great and above all it's a fun story, so I'm sure kids would love Templeton and will look forward to have exciting adventures at least like the one he has on the book.

Title: 'Templeton Turtle Goes Exploring'

Author: Ron Pridmore

Illustrator: Michele-lee Phelan

Bridgeway Books

Published: July 2008

Pages: 32


As usual, we will give away our review copy. And of course we'll also plant a tree for this copy and send it to the lucky winner with our "
One tree planted for this book" sticker.

How to win? Simply – write a comment below, suggesting another good idea how to connect children to nature and make them excited about the outdoors at least as Templeton is. Good luck :)

Submissions are accepted until Saturday, August 2nd, 12PM EST. The winner will be announced the following day.