Jan Andrews Very Last First Time

ISBN 13: 9780021794966

Very Last First Time

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9780021794966: Very Last First Time

Eva lives in an Inuit village in northern Canada. In the winter, people search along the bottom of the seabed beneath a thick shelf of ice for mussels to eat. Eva usually helps her mother, but for the first time, she’s going to go by herself. She soon gathers a pan full of mussels. But then, her candle goes out, and the tide threatens to return! When she is finally safe with her mother, Eva proclaims, "That was my very last first time walking alone on the bottom of the sea." An ALA Notable Children’s Book, Very Last First Time comes from one of Canada's most distinguished storytellers and an award-winning illustrator. "A unique experience for young listeners and an intriguing introduction to another culture." — The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books "An extraordinary picture book experience." — The New York Times Book Review

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From School Library Journal:

Kindergarten-Grade 3 Eva Padlyat had often walked on the bottom of the sea with her mother. This extraordinary-sounding feat is routine for the Inuits of Northern Canada, who lower themselves through the thick winter ice at low tide to search for mussels on the ocean floor. It is now time for Eva's first trip under the ice alone. She and her mother pull their sleds across the snow until they find a place to chisel a hole; then Eva carefully lowers herself into the darkness. Lighting a candle, she begins to look for mussels; she then goes exploring. When she hears the tide coming in and drops her candle, she feels panicky, but she soon finds her matches and another candle to light her way back to the ice hole. On the surface of the ice once again, Eva sums up her adventure as her "very last first time" for walking alone on the ocean floor. This look at Eskimo life today combines the ancient custom of collecting mussels with modern features such as airplanes and snowmobiles. The story is well-developed, with just the right amount of suspense. The watercolor illustrations are somewhat uneven in quality; the colors in the land scenes are rather garish, and some figures are awkwardly proportioned. The eerie shades of the ocean floor are quite effective, however, and the strange seascapes lend an air of unreality. Very Last First Time is an intriguing view of a little-known way of life. Lucy Young Clem, Evansville-Vanderburgh County Public Lib . , Ind.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

In search of mussels while the tide is out, an Inuit girl walks alone beneath the ice of the frozen ocean, knowing she will never do it-for the first time-again. Pointillist paintings in purple and yellow emphasize the beauty of her undersea adventure. Ages 5-8.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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