Kirkus Reviews: Piratess Tilly Easter Island

An eye-pleasing picture book that offers a winning mix of adventure, science, and poetry, with a strong heroine who invites readers to view the world as a place of natural wonder. --Kirkus Reviews

Wow! The first industry review is in for the upcoming sequel, The Adventures of Piratess Tilly Easter Island (February 2017, White Wave Press). I am incredibly grateful that the reviewer at Kirkus Reviews both recognized and appreciated the story development and the educational additions (glossary and short bios on Tilly's historical heroes). Onward we go!

KIRKUS REVIEW

In this second installment of an ecologically based adventure series for children, a young naturalist and ship’s captain sails to a remote island and discovers a threat to the local wildlife.

Piratess Tilly—the refreshingly bold, smart heroine introduced in Lorayne’s debut picture book (The Adventures of Piratess Tilly, 2016), illustrated by Watson—takes to the sea again on her research ship, the Foster. She’s accompanied by her friend Yuki (a rescued koala bear) and the seven orphan boys who make up her diverse crew. Their destination: Easter Island. Unfolding in graceful haiku, the tale follows passionate naturalist Tilly (“An explorer’s dress / Patch pockets for her notebooks / Trade tools in her bag”) as she studies the mysterious Moai statues and scuba dives to observe marine life native to the area, sketching and cataloging what she sees. The trip takes an unexpected turn when the crew encounters pirates raiding the nests of sooty terns in an egg-smuggling venture, and the group launches a successful rescue effort, led by parasailing Tilly and Yuki. (In the first Tilly adventure, a trip to the Galapagos Islands became a mission to save baby giant tortoises from the clutches of another band of pirates.) Lorayne’s poetic text is fully integrated into Watson’s lovely watercolor images, executed with an eye for captivating detail. The tale delivers enough escapades and suspense to satisfy a young audience, but the author also includes ample learning opportunities to encourage children to seek out the story’s substantial real-life underpinnings. These include examples of sailors’ knots, a glossary of words and terms—endemic, expeditions, trade winds, thermals, etc.—and various fish species skillfully rendered by Watson. In addition, the volume features short biographies of Tilly’s 19th- and 20th-century inspirations, Charles Darwin (“Darwin on her shelves / Evokes her scholarly dreams / Coral reefs and fish”) and anthropologist Katherine Routledge, written by science historian Michael Barton and archaeologist Jo Anne Van Tilburg.

An eye-pleasing picture book that offers a winning mix of adventure, science, and poetry, with a strong heroine who invites readers to view the world as a place of natural wonder.

Event: 11/5 at Strawbery Banke Museum

strawbery_banke_event.jpg My colleague Maria Kamoulakou of Sky Cloud City and  I am looking forward to meeting families and other local authors at the 2nd annual Children's Author Festival at the Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, NH on Saturday 11/5 from 11am-3pm. I hope to see you there!

Update: The Adventures of Piratess Tilly Easter Island!

The months of research and writing; illustration and painting; and now book design are all finished for the sequel -- due out January 2017! More updates to come, but I am feeling immensely proud of this book and cannot wait to share it with all of you! piratess_tilly_easter_island_cover_150

Plushie Dolls Update!

Woohoo!!! The Piratess Tilly and Yuki handmade plushies are good to go! I am so excited!!! What a process and experience to get to this point! A special thanks to Kendra Shedenhelm for her amazing work on these! Stay tuned -- I'll be listing the first set in the next week!          

Australia Day: We've Adopted a Koala!

I am so excited to share that Piratess Tilly has truly adopted a koala - Koala Wattle, who represents all of the koalas in the wild that need protection from losing their natural habitats. Proceeds from book sales will now be going towards a monthly contribution to the Australian Koala Foundation! Thank YOU for your help! To learn more, please visit savethekoala.com! And with that, Happy Australia Day!! <3 <3 <3

Piratess Tilly book proceeds AKF

We won a Moonbeam Children's Book Award!

Moonbeam Sociam Media We are incredibly honored and thrilled to announce that The Adventures of Piratess Tilly has won its first children’s book award!! We were 1 of 5 to win a very special award, the Moonbeam Spirit Award for Exploration, a Moonbeam Children’s Book Award. See the full list of winners here!

This Moonbeam Spirit Award is “for dedication to children’s books and literacy and for inspired writing, illustrating and publishing. This year we chose books in five different areas. All recipients will receive gold medals.” The other 4 categories for this Spirit Award are: Creativity, Compassion, Imagination and Preservation.

A little bit about Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards, which is in its 9th year:

“Creating books that inspire our children to read, to learn, and to dream is an extremely important task, and these awards were conceived to reward those efforts. Each year's entries are judged by expert panels of youth educators, librarians, booksellers, and book reviewers of all ages. Award recipients receive gold, silver and bronze medals and stickers depicting a mother and child reading and silhouetted by a full moon.”

More info to follow once the press release is up!!

Piratess Tilly in . . . Easter Island!

I am beyond thrilled to announce that Karen Watson and I are moving forward with the next book in The Adventure of Piratess Tilly series! She and her crew are headed to Easter Island! Here is the very first watercolor illustration!  

Piratess Tilly Easter Island Promo

Featured in Reports of the National Center for Science Education!

I am incredibly honored and proud to announce that not only has The Adventures of Piratess Tilly been mentioned in the article, “An Interdisciplinary Approach to Evolution Education” by Mark Terry (Co-founder, NWS; Head of School 1983-1990; Science Chair, 10th grade Biology and 12th grade Primate Biology at The Northwest School in Seattle, WA); but one of the illustrations and haiku is being used as the cover to the current edition of the National Center for Science Education’s online and printed journal, Reports of the National Center for Science Education.

*** The NCSE is a non-profit organization that defends the teaching of evolution and climate change. ***

Thank you NCSE for this amazing recognition and thank you The Northwest School for my incredible education!

To view and read the journal, please visit here!

To purchase your own hardcover copy of The Adventures of Piratess Tilly, please visit our Shop! Thank you!

Piratess Tilly NCSE Vol 35, No 2 (2015) 2015-03-14 08-33-01

First Page Sample of Piratess Tilly

For our new followers here, on Facebook and on Twitter; I thought I'd share the very first page of The Adventures of Piratess Tilly! And don't forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Piratess Tilly Page 1 Sample