Tilly’s Reef Adventure
Rhonda N. Garward
NLA Publishing, 2017
36pp., pbk., RRP $A19.99
On a still moonlit night, a mother turtle lays her eggs in a hole in the sand of a Queensland beach and returns to the ocean with all the other mothers who have done the same thing. When it comes to raising offspring, their job is done.
Eight weeks later the eggs hatch and right from the get-go, life is hazardous. Just getting to the water from the nest is treacherous with a lot of dangers to dodge – hungry herons, seagulls and crabs lie in wait – and life in the water is also testing. Who is friend and who is foe? Luckily, Shelly the seahorse is a friend and introduces Tilly to some of the other creatures that inhabit this unique, spectacular watery world. While there are still those who are enemies, Tilly’s greatest threat comes from something that is water-borne but not water-bred…
You just know that children’s books from NLA Publishing are going to be brilliant, packed with stunning real-life illustrations and information that is pitched at the young reader and backed up with added extras after the story ends. Tilly’s Reef Adventure is no exception. Using a seamless lift-the-flap format, young readers are introduced to the creatures of the Great Barrier Reef so they can experience its beauty and colour and start to build an affinity with it through the personification of its inhabitants. Thus, when Tilly’s life is threatened because of thoughtless human actions, there is an emotional connection so that they might think before they do a similar thing. Actions have consequences and sometimes they are devastating.
A stunning addition to a growing collection of beautiful books that offer so much more than a good story.