Perfect Picture Book Friday looks at There Might Be Lobsters by Carolyn Crimi, illustrated by Laurel Molk.
About fifteen years ago, I traveled with my family to Hawaii. In addition to experiencing tropical surroundings for the first time, waking up at four in the morning to watch the sunrise, strolling barefoot along the beach to collect shiny seashells and funny shaped pieces of lava, I experienced snorkeling for the first time.
I also discovered the paralyzing power of the brain.
Despite being told repeatedly that once the snorkeling mask and breathing hose were tightly secured I could safely breathe under the water, I couldn’t inhale the teeniest molecule of air. I dipped my face below the water’s surface and floated about, holding my breath while watching a school of fish swim past my fingertips.
I brought up my face to yank out the breathing tube and suck in the sweet air.
I dipped my face down again, watching and waiting for another fish. I waited as long as I could hold my breath. Then…
I brought up my face, yanked out the breathing tube, and sucked in the sweet air.
Right about that time, my hubby swam over and handed me a camera in a water-proof case. “You might have more fun if you’re taking pictures,” he said.
I replaced the breathing tube, pressed my face into the water, and observed the deep sea world through the camera’s lens. It was at the time, when air seemed a good thing to get, that an enormous sea turtle paddled beneath me. I snapped picture after picture, fluttering my feet to keep up with him. As the beautiful turtle disappeared behind a curtain of seaweed, I realized something.
I brought up my face, yanked out the breathing tube, and yelled, “I did it! I breathed underwater!”
Sometimes it takes something big, like a giant sea turtle, to get us over our fears. In the case of a dog named Suki, from today’s Perfect Picture Book Friday review, getting over his long list of fears at the beach takes the loss of something small but of immense importance.
There Might Be Lobsters
Written by- Carolyn Crimi
Illustrated by – Laurel Molk
Published by- Candlewick Press – 2017
Topics – Fear, Friendship, overcoming obstacles, and love.
Opening – Lots of things at the beach scared Suki. Lots.
“Come on, Sukie, you can do it!” said Eleanor. She stood at the bottom of the stairs to the beach and waved to Sukie.
But Sukie was just a small dog,
and the stairs were big and sandy, and she hadn’t had lunch yet, and her foot hurt a little…
(and I’m going to stop here with hopes you’ll check out this book to read this heartfelt story and enjoy every emotion-packed illustration.)
Synopsis from Amazon – A little dog’s paralyzing anxiety gives way to bravery when someone smaller is in need in this humorous, tenderly sympathetic story.
Lots of things at the beach scare Sukie. Lots. Because she is just a small dog, and the stairs are big and sandy, and the waves are big and whooshy, and the balls are big and beachy. And besides, there might be lobsters. With endearing illustrations and a perfectly paced text that captures a timid pup’s looping thoughts, here is a funny and honest read-aloud about how overwhelming the world can be when you’re worried — and how empowering it is to overcome your fears when it matters the most.
Why do I like this book? Each of us, at some point in our lives, has experienced a fear that stopped us from doing something. Like a fear of drowning that turned learning to swim into a miserable memory for us (me). Or a fear of heights that kept us (me) from zip-lining hundreds of feet above the Hawaiian forest with family and friends.
In the case of today’s picture book, Sukie, a little dog, fears many things at the beach, including lobsters. Overcoming his fear comes when the unthinkable happens, and he must choose between feeling loss and lonliness forever or facing his fear to keep something of great value. Spoiler alert. Sukie faces his fear. But you knew he would.
Writing Prompt: Write about a fear you overcame and how facing it changed you. Include your emotions before and after the event.
Learn more about Carolyn Crimi HERE.
Learn more about Laurel Molk HERE.
Until next Friday.