Mom's Choice Award Gold Medalist--September 2007
Canadian Chocolate Lily Award Gold Medalist--June 2007
Save Green Sea Turtles community awareness page:
Chocolate Lily Award congratulates Stephanie Lisa Tara and Lee Edward Fodi (illustrator) for I'll Follow The Moon's third place win!!! -- *Chocolate Lily Award Winner - June 2007*
Click, clack, tap,
Blue melts away. As I tap, crick, crack,I spin, I sway.
I'm coming, Mama, I'll see you soon
I know just how...I'll follow the moon.
First-time author Stephanie Lisa Tara and Canadian illustrator Lee Edward Fodi have teamed up to create a lyrical rendition of a green sea turtle's first glimpse of life. Hatched on a moon-washed beach, the baby turtle finds its way by instinct across the expanse of sand to the sea and a rendezvous with its mother.
Written in simple verse in the first person, the rhythmic text is full of action and sensory detail and loaded with alliteration and onomatopoeia for an enjoyable read-aloud. Only one stanza using the word 'eternity' may puzzle young minds. The refrain, "I'm coming, Mama.....," repeated on each double page spread, is soothing and reassuring of the joyful reunion to come. The atmosphere of a quiet but determined struggle to break free of the egg soon gives way to growing excitement as the turtle mingles with fellow hatchlings and catches his first tempting sensations: the smell of salt air, the sight of the moon's glow, the gentle touch and beckoning sounds of the waves rushing to shore. Once he's free of the land, new motions take over: gulp, spin, float, swim.... The final happy refrain is new and satisfying: "I'm here, Mama - here with you. I know I'd find you, Moon did too."
Framed by endpapers of soft, limitless, undersea green, Fodi's delightful illustrations feature an animated and engaging baby emerging from an egg buried in golden sand. With other tiny turtles, he is shown plowing through the damp sand, sampling the salty sea air and marching unerringly toward the moonlight glimmer, his guide to the ocean. Once afloat, he soon comes face to face with "eyes like mine" in his new watery home. The gold of sand, blue of sky and green of the sea repeated throughout the book bring a sense of harmony. The turtle is the focal point of all the pictures, with few background details added. The illustrator has carefully integrated the turtle's actions with Tara's verse which relies heavily on verbs: roll, slide, tumble......crawl, scoop, shove. Young children will be propelled through the story in the illustrations as well as the text.
This attractive book is an enjoyable way to introduce young listeners to a fascinating cycle in nature.
Gillian Richardson, who lives in BC, is a former teacher-librarian and freelance writer. -- CM Magazine, Gillian Richardson
Gorgeous watercolors chronicle the journey of a baby sea turtle from its hatching to its first swim in the sea. -- Kirkus Reviews, September 2005
In this tranquil bedtime story, a baby sea turtle hatches on the beach and wants to find his mother. And he knows just how -- he'll follow the moon! From his gentle struggles to break free of his egg to his determination to dig his way out of the sand nest and his eager shuffles toward the ocean, we follow the baby sea turtle on each step of his instinctive journey back to his loving mother who awaits him in the sea. Stephanie Lisa Tara's gentle verse along with Lee Edward Fodi's soft, earth-toned illustrations capture the gentle natural beauty of this nocturnal beach migration. Your young readers and listeners will be rooting for the young sea turtle as he works his way toward the sea and be thrilled to see him reunite with his mother, even as they discover the beauty of this real life struggle of the green sea turtle. -- Books of Wonder, New York City; Peter Glassman December 2007
Mom's Choice Awards 2007 -- wishes to congratulate Stephanie Lisa Tara --Janie Magruder, The Arizona Republic
From the Publisher
Stephanie earned a B.A. in English literature and poetry at the University of Connecticut. She spent the next ten years writing ad copy in Manhattan. After the birth of her daughter, Madeline, Stephanie decided to focus on her passion--children's verse, which she deeply believes has the inherent power to charm, inspire, and teach children and adults alike. Tying verse together with insight means magic for Stephanie. Her work is inspired by literature's lauded children's authors--from Grimm to Lear to Seuss.