Sunday, February 14, 2016

Walking and Listening to "The Thing About Jellyfish"

Benjamin, Ali. The Thing About Jellyfish. Hachette Audio. 2015, $21.98, ISBN 9781478959823.

Suzy's world comes to a screeching halt when her best friend Franny drowns. Not fully understanding how something like this could have happened to a strong swimmer, she feels as though there has to be a reason behind it. While on a class field trip to the aquarium, Suzy wanders off, stumbling upon a jellyfish exhibit. There Suzy reads all about jellyfish stings and is fascinated by what she learns about the deadly sting of the Irukanji jellyfish. Convinced that this is cause of Franny's death, Suzy sets out to learn everything she possibly can about the Irukanji, hoping that by proving this is the cause of her best friend's death everything will make sense.

Note: I loved how this story was laid out as a scientific research paper with sections being called, "Purpose," "Hypothesis" and "Background." This way a great way to have Suzy's story unfold since Suzy was trying to make sense of Franny's death methodically, just as science is.
In the age of "We need diverse books," I was greatly bothered that a character with a Japanese last name was being described as having strawberry blonde hair. Granted, she could have married a Japanese man or could have been hapa with very little Japanese blood in her or she could have been adopted by a Japanese family. Whatever the case may be, I felt she should have been portrayed with accurate hair color. This does not detract from the story in anyway, it just really bugged me.

Favorite Chapter Title: Goodbye Thor

Portuguese Man-O-War are quite common in our ocean, but this wasn't the type of day you see them in the ocean or on the beaches.

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