An extraordinary story of a boy who protects a baby whale that locals believe is threatening their livelihood. Will Jackson is hiding out, a city boy reluctantly staying with his uncle in small town New Zealand while he struggles to recover from a brutal attack and the aftermath of a humiliating YouTube clip gone viral. After he discovers a young abandoned orca whale his life is further thrown into chaos, when he rallies to help protect it against hostile, threatening interests. This threatens to tear apart the small fishing community and forever changes Will's life. The boy and the whale develop a special bond, linked by Will's love of singing. With echoes of classic book and film The whalerider this powerful connection is utterly convincing on the page. An exciting plot-driven story full of drama, tension and romance, this magical book captures both heart and mind to hold the reader enthralled from start to finish. These qualities, along with its lyrical use of language and its compelling and persuasive exploration of many global concerns, makes this a beautifully touching, rich and multi-layered story by an award-winning writer for young adults. Singing Home the Whale will appeal to all readers of high-quality New Zealand fiction.
What happens when the 12th century's most famous French lovers are caught in the crossfire of factions, religious reform and zealotry? Heloise has an exceptional mind. In her determination to pursue learning rather than marriage or life as a cloistered nun, her path inevitably crosses with Peter Abelard, the celebrity philosopher, theologian and master at Paris' famed Cathedral School. When two such brilliant minds meet and engage, sparks are likely to fly. And when those two minds belong to a charismatic man and a determined young woman, those sparks are likely to ignite. But theirs is an impossible love. At a time when the Gregorian Reforms are starting to bite and celibacy among the clergy and church officials is being rigorously imposed, these two embark on an affair that will see their lives forever changed. Based on meticulous up-to-date research and the pair's own writings, this novel recreates the times, offers a plausible interpretation of the known facts and a vivid imagining of the gaps in this legendary story. So, too, it shines a light on a changing world whose attitudes and politics are not so very different from our own.
Smashed tells the story of three teenage friends, and how their friendship, loyalties and values are thrown into confusion when the main character's younger sister is raped by one of his best friends. His reaction sets in motion a ripple effecto, which culminates in a violent act of revenge upon the rapist. Has our hero done this? As he finds himself deep in trouble and confused about the truth, he is forced to the vital question: are we really just puppets controlled by our genes, or do we have the free will to rewrite our own destiny? Smashed is a cautionary tale about growing up of the huge and complex challenges today's young people face in their lives. Told with humour and compassion it is also, ultimately, a story of courage, love and redemption. Smashed tackles gritty teenage issues such as alcohol, physical and sexual abuse, and anger but author Mandy Hager delivers it with a sense of humour and great sensitivity. It is a thoughtful, pacy read one that's hard to put down.
"A voice for which one should feel not only affection but admiration." --The New York Times The Whale Caller, Zakes Mda's fifth novel, is his most enchanting and accessible book yet-a romantic comedy of sorts in which the changing face of post-apartheid South Africa is revealed through prodigious, lyrical storytelling. As the novel opens, the seaside village of Hermanus, on the country's west coast, is overrun with whale watchers-foreign tourists wearing floral shirts and toting expensive binoculars, determined to see whales in their natural habitat. But when the tourists have gone home, the Whale Caller lingers at the shoreline, wooing a whale he calls Sharisha with cries from a kelp horn. When Sharisha fails to appear for weeks on end, the Whale Caller frets like a jealous lover-oblivious to the fact that the town drunk, Saluni, a woman who wears a silk dress and red stiletto heels, is infatuated with him. After much ado-which Mda relates with great relish-the two misfits fall in love. But each of them is ill equipped for romance, and their on-again, off-again relationship suggests something of the fitful nature of change in post-apartheid South Africa, where just living from one day to the next can be challenge enough. Mda has spoken of the end of apartheid as a lifting of the South African novelist's burden to write on political subjects. With The Whale Caller, he has written a tender, charming novel-the work of a virtuoso among international writers.
The Whale Shark Song is a story about wanting to be something you are not and how being yourself is more important to oneself and everyone else for that matter. When the whale shark tries to join in with the whale song, his singing does not make everyone happy and peaceful. As he struggles to sing like a whale he finds himself asking one big question, "Why am I called a whale shark?" While he does learn the answer, he discovers something even bigger.
Glashka can understand whale song--but with that mysterious power comes great responsibility. When she discovers thousands of whales trapped in a rapidly freezing inlet, she knows it is up to her to gather the people of her town to help them. Based on an actual event, this inspiring story follows Glashka and her people as they come to understand the importance of all life. Full-color illustrations.
When Claire is stranded on the boat after her father is thrown overboard in a storm, she spends days and nights alone, her only solace being the whales that seem strangely to accompany and protect her.
"In the spirit of Carl Sagan's Contact and Stephen Spielberg's Close Encounters, speech scientist Howard Steven Pines' science fiction and marine mammal protectionist thriller takes whale language research to a whole new realm: the excitement of first contact and the recognition of the intelligence, dignity, and wisdom of another earthly species"--Provided by the publisher.
Author: Mandy Hager
Publisher: Random House (New Zealand)
Release Date: 2013
Genre: Family problems
Powerful YA novel by an award-winning writer about a teenager coming to terms with the suicide of her sister. Dear Vincent is also a novel about the power of love, and how the acquisition of inner peace requires forgiveness of ourselves and others. 17 year old Tara McClusky's life is hard. She shares the care of her paralysed father with her domineering, difficult mother, forced to cut down on her hours at school to help support the family with a part-time rest home job. She's very much alone, still grieving the loss of her older sister Van, who died five years before. Her only source of consolation is her obsession with art - and painting in particular. Most especially she is enamoured with Vincent Van Gogh: she has read all his letters and finds many parallels between the tragic story of his life and her own. Luckily she meets the intelligent, kindly Professor Max Stockhamer (a Jewish refugee and philosopher) and his grandson Johannes, and their support is crucial to her ability to survive this turbulent time. NZ Post Award-wining author Mandy Hager tackles the difficult topic of suicide fearlessly, with a novel that's not afraid to go to the dark places but which resolves its story beautifully. It's uplifting and positive.
After moving from Montana to Vancouver Island, Sarah Richardson finds she has much in common with her new best friend Goldie and her father, a marine biologist with a passion for whales, finds his subject of study revered by his new Native American neighbors.