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Surf War!

Surf War!

Author: Margaret Read MacDonald
Illustrator: Geraldo Valerío.

Folktale from the Marshall Islands. Sandpiper and Whale argue about who owns the beach. Each calls in relatives to help claim the island for themselves. At last, as they are destroying the bay, they realize they should share. Useful for discussions of ecology and peaceful resolution.

Type Year Publisher Price Length   ISBN
Hardcover  2009  August House  $16.95  32 pages  978-0874838893 

Additional Information and Resources


Six Traits usage
Book of the Day 9-9-09 on Anastasia Suen's Six Traits website.



"The subtle, yet important, moral woven throughout the tale will resonant long after the book is placed back on the shelf. The dialogue between the characters is very accessible for younger ears and effortlessly lends itself to the spoken word. The illustrations by Geraldo Val?rio are gorgeous, so vibrant they are almost musical in their fluidity. The story and pictures are sure to capture the interest of any child, whether in the classroom, library, or home"  ...karenchace.blogspot

"This charming story provides a moral about getting along with others and caring for the environment.–Donna Atmur, Los Angeles Public Library "  ...SLJ REVIEWS, AUGUST, 2009

" This book and story are a definite “thumbs up” and the end of the story is so upbeat—“So Whale and Sandpiper settled down to share and care for their beautiful bay … together.” Surf War! is a winner and sets a first-class example for living life in the world today. "  ...Linda Spitzer

"The illustrations dominate the pages, with the birds and their backgrounds painted with bright shades of yellow, pink, and orange, while the sea and its creatures are deeper blues, grays, and purples. This charming story provides a moral about getting along with others and caring for the environment.–Donna Atmur, Los Angeles Public Library "  ...SLJ August 2009

"The telling is rich with a storyteller’s voice and sound effects, while Valério’s bright blues and yellows span the spreads with broad, brush strokes that mirror the setting of this symbiotic, ecology folktale"  ...Kirkus Sept 1, 2009

"A delightful retelling of a story from the Marshall Islands about what happened when a whale and a sandpiper each decide they need to prove themselves king of the area. It is a salutary tale of the futility of destroying what you love and need just to prove yourself right and could easily be used by parents of argumentative offspring or by teachers trying to promote understanding and tolerance."  ...


Foreward National Book Award Finalist

Storytelling World Award
Stories for Young Listeners Category Winner   

Children's Core Collection, 2014, 21st ed.

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