If you have children, or have ever traveled with children you may have heard the phrase, “are we there yet?” or maybe just being familiar with some less than enthusiast attitudes during a long journey. In many cases the journey can always be improved with small goals, a good friend or supportive family member, or fun discoveries along the way. Recently while on vacation in Destin, Florida when asked if they wanted to Uber or walk the beach back to our rental condo from dinner my kids exclaimed, “The beach! “Walk the beach!” A little while into the journey there were certainly moments of doubt but thanks to the fun of sibling tag, waves to jump, birds to watch, and the realization that eventually they were more than half way and there was no turning back they carried on. This walk was one of my (and dare I say their) favorite memories from the trip. The next day they requested to do the walk again, and would have even walked there and back if the opportunity presented itself.
As someone who loves walks along the water and finding adventure in anything I knew I would enjoy this book so I was very excited when Books Forward asked me to take a look at it! Harry and the Pelican was written by Amy Leaf and illustrated by Tami Boyce. I packed it with us for Memorial Weekend camping on a lake in Michigan and it was a hit for my youngest and my nephew.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this book! Have you ever seen a pelican on your adventure?! Can you remember a journey that felt long at first but were so thankful for it after? As I reflect on walking in nature I can’t help but think of John Muir’s quote. “In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.”
Sharing some words from Amy’s press kit with Books Forward and an interview I believe it will give you an even better idea of how lovely this book, and author are!
“Inspired by walks with her grandpa, Amy Leaf felt passionate about sharing her love of walking and appreciation of nature. In her own words, “walking clears the mind, provides energy, helps to generate ideas, and allows one to see nature in new ways on every walk.” This beach quest will grab the attention of kids longing to find adventure and will remind parents and grandparents of the joy that comes with watching children discover new places for the first time.
Leaf invites you to take a walk on the beach with Harry and his Grandpa. While Harry challenges himself to walk all the way to a distant lighthouse, he meets a new friend, spots a special bird, and proves to himself that he can complete the trip. Early readers will love following along with Harry and his new friends, looking for treasures on the seashore and discovering a seabird in the process. Fun facts about pelicans are included so that readers can learn more about these large water birds and their connection to nature. With a coloring book edition available to make this tale even more interactive, it is sure to be a hit with kids and parents alike. Join in on this coastal adventure and rediscover a love of nature through a child’s eye.”
An Interview with Amy Leaf
- What do you want a reader to remember about your book?
I want the reader to remember a wonderful walk with Grandpa and to think about a happy time
shared with a family member or friend. Additionally, I hope the reader will remember the fun of making it to the lighthouse and the adventures that sprung up along the way.
- Why did you choose to write a children’s book?
I chose to write a children’s book because of my grandpa. He always told us stories. I think I
have a way of seeing the world through his eyes because of all his stories. I wanted to share the fun, adventure, and joy of taking a walk.
- Your passion for nature and keeping our Earth safe is evident in the book. Why is this so important and how can we educate our kids on this subject?
I am so glad you understood that from the book. We need to take good care of our planet so that we have beautiful places to walk, so we have trees to shelter us from sun, so we can grow
healthy food, and have clean water and air. We can educate our kids on this subject through
reading nature books, talking about the importance of treasuring our planet, and taking
care of it. Imagine how different this book would be if Harry was walking through a beach filled with garbage. Discussing this with readers and letting the reader imagine a polluted beach and ocean is a critical conversation and a way to demonstrate the need to keep our Earth safe.
- What do you want readers to know about walking?
Walking brings lots of benefits and I think lots of joy. Not only does walking provide good
exercise, but it can provide inspiration, a time to think, and a way to re-energize. You can,
maybe, even make a difference in someone’s life by taking a walk with them. That someone
might just feel happier because they got to share a walk with you. My grandpa was told that
walking helped his heart get stronger. I think walking helps the mind and body get stronger.
5. What are your plans for future books? Are you planning any more adventures with Harry?
Yes, I am planning more adventures for Harry.The next book is written but not yet illustrated. This book also centers around Harry and Grandpa. Harry and Grandpa like to explore on their walks – and so does a puppy, named Fox!
I know I’m looking forward to Harry’s next adventure! Plus who doesn’t love coloring? Be sure to take this coloring book with you on your next adventure, land or sea it will make a perfect break to your journey.
You can purchase the book HERE https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1736380923/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i0.