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I heard the wind above me in the sails. I remember thinking, this is silly, you have't got your safety harness on, you haven't got your lifejacket on. You shouldn't be doing this. Then the boat veered violently and I was thrown sideways. I had no time to grab the guard-rail. I was in the cold of the sea before I could even open my mouth to scream. Washed up on an island in the Pacific, Michael struggles to survive on his own. He can't find food, he can't find water. In the end he curls up to die. When he wakes, there is a plate beside him of fish, of fruit, and a bowl of fresh water. He is not alone
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Michael Morpurgo has written over one hundred books and won many awards. In 1976 Michael and his wife Clare started the charity Farms For City Children, which aims to relieve the poverty of experience of young children from inner city and urban areas. In 1999 they were awarded the MBE for their work in creating these farms and in 2006 Michael received an OBE. His novel War Horse has been adapted into a hugely successful and critically acclaimed West End play. Michael is a tireless champion for children's books and was formerly the Children's Laureate. Francois Place is a French author and illustrator specialising in children's literature. He wrote Les Dernier Geants (The Last Giants), a book which went on to win numerous awards. He has since won the Grand Prix de la foire de Bologne for l'Atlas des Geographes d'Orbae (The Atlas of the Geographers of Orbae) as well as winning a special award from Les Librairies Sorcieres. He lives in France.From School Library Journal:
Grade 4-8-This poignant adventure story begins in England in 1988 and ends halfway around the globe in a place that will change the 11-year-old protagonist forever. After losing his job, Michael's father surprises the family by purchasing a yacht in which they will sail around the world. In the first weeks at sea, Michael, his parents, and his dog, Stella, zigzag from England to Australia and across the Coral Sea, where Michael's reverie comes to a frightening end. In the middle of the night, he and Stella are swept overboard in a fierce storm, and he later awakens on an island beach. The island is a hostile jungle full of howling gibbons, voracious mosquitoes, and brutal heat, all of which challenge his ability to survive. Yet when he finds fresh water and food mysteriously laid out for him each morning, he realizes that he is not alone. He soon comes face-to-face with Kensuke, an old Japanese soldier who cautiously protects Michael in spite of the boy's dogged determination to build a bonfire that will signal potential rescuers, defying Kensuke's wish that the outside world never learn of his existence on the island. For nearly a year, the man and boy help each other, moving from an uneasy d‚tente to a deep friendship. What might have been just a gritty tale of survival evolves into a gentle parable about trust, compassion, love, and hope. This well-crafted story has all the thrills and intrigues of Gary Paulsen's Hatchet (Macmillan, 1986) and Theodore Taylor's The Cay (Avon, 1976), and it will resonate with the same audience.
William McLoughlin, Brookside School, Worthington, OH
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Egmont Books Ltd 2003, 2003. Condition: New. New paperback. Fine and unread Children's Books. Seller Inventory # C125485
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