Whale Song by Cheryl Kaye Tardif

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Stars: ***1/2

Summary: The only witness to a tragedy loses her memory and an innocent may be in prison for the crime. Whale Song asks the difficult questions: which is the higher morality – love or law?

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book other than there would be whales in it. The summary above comes from the back of the book and doesn’t say much. I’ll tell you a little more about the book so you can properly decide if it’s your kind of book but don’t worry, I’d never reveal too much or spoil and ending.

The main character is an 11 year old girl whose family moves to a small town where most of the inhabitants are Native Canadians. The book is Children’s Fiction but for older children, say 12 and up. A large portion of the book has stories, myths and history of Native Canadians, specifically Huuayaht. I found this very interesting.

Also, since the summary says a tragedy will happen but doesn’t specify anything, you don’t know where or when it will happen. I don’t know if it was on purpose or not but quite a few times the words made me think the tragedy would happen next and I was wrong. As an adult, later on in the book I figured out what the tragedy would be although I wasn’t sure who did it. I had an idea and it did turn out to be right but I could just have easily been wrong. I don’t think a child reader would be guess what the tragedy would be.

Another common occurrence in this book is bullying and the book teaches good lessons about it. It may be a good book to give to a child who is being bullied just as a fun read but with underlying lessons.

Overall I enjoyed the book although I did find my mind wandering a bit. The writing style didn’t pull me into it’s hold until the second half of the book.

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.