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Here Come the Humpbacks! Hardcover – February 1, 2013


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 790L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Charlesbridge (February 1, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580894054
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580894050
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 11.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #398,702 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

This is a lyrical and seemingly straightforward tale of a mother humpback and her calf migrating from the warm winter waters of the Caribbean Sea to a summer feeding area off the coast of New England. Yet the simple text delivers a subtle and timely message of conservation, not to mention a fable about perseverance and courage. Along their way, the humpbacks encounter all manner of dangerous and wondrous obstacles, including a brush with a hungry orca, an encounter with a boat of whale watchers, and ocean liners crossing their migratory path. The descriptive text (One slaps the escort whale with a flipper. Bonk! Smack!) and Hogan’s panoramic, cool-colored charcoals make this obvious read-along fodder, but both elements are also detailed enough to engage independent learners. As is becoming increasingly common, the story is punctuated with nonfiction facts in a smaller font, regarding everything from humpback songs to whale-watching rules. A little something for everyone here. Grades K-3. --Anderson, Erin

About the Author

April Pulley Sayre is the award-winning author of dozens of books, including MEET THE HOWLERS!; TURTLE, TURTLE, WATCH OUT!; and ONE IS A SNAIL, TEN IS A CRAB, an ALA Notable Book. She lives in South Bend, Indiana.

More About the Author

April Pulley Sayre loves the sounds of animals and the sounds of words. She is an award-winning author of over 55 natural history books for children and adults. Her read-aloud books, known for their lyricism and scientific precision, have been translated into French, Dutch, Japanese, and Korean. Her picture book VULTURE VIEW, illustrated by Steve Jenkins, received the Theodor "Seuss" Geisel Honor from the American Library Association. STARS BENEATH YOUR BED: the Surprising Story of Dust, received the AAAS/SB&F/Subaru Prize for Excellence in Science Books and was named an ALA Notable. ONE IS SNAIL, TEN IS A CRAB was an ALA Notable and received Britain's highest literacy award. THE BUMBLEBEE QUEEN marked her third win of the John Burroughs Award. Sayre and her husband Jeff have followed lemurs in Madagascar, pursued army ants in Panama, and eaten piranha in the Peruvian Amazon. Mostly, though, they garden for wildlife and munch blueberries at their home in the Midwest.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By LP Salas on March 20, 2013
Format: Hardcover
April Pulley Sayre's Here Come the Humpbacks! is a gorgeous book covering the annual migration of humpback whales. Not only is it incredibly informative, but it's beautifully written, too. Here's a snippet from the beginning:

"A female humpback swims away to quiet shallows. Her blue-gray head, bumpy as a pickle, lifts and looks. It is February. She is expecting¨Csomething big, something soon. The time has come."

The fonts/typefaces organize the story. For babies and toddlers, you could just read the largest phrases, which also serve as subheadings for the different stages of the journey. "Here comes a humpback!" "Here breathes a humpback" etc. Short, dynamic statements and art in deep blues and greens will enchant kids.

For preschool through second grade, you can read the main text, but probably not in one sitting. So those subheads will give you good stopping points. And there are interesting sidebar notes and endmatter to introduce in various readings, too.

This book shows kids not only the big picture of humpback whales' cycle of childbirth and migration, but also the fine details that kids will be fascinated by (ok, grown-ups, too). Did you know that a mother humpback whale loses ten tons of weight from May to the next April, when she arrives at her feeding grounds?

I generally donate my review copies of books to schools I visit, but I confess I'll be holding onto this one for a while longer yet, just to savor the words and art a little more:>)

Extension activities for Here Come the Humpbacks!:
* Map it out. On a globe or a world map, trace the path of the humpback whales described in this book.
* Take a deep breath.
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