Dolphin Summer

224p. Scholastic. Apr. 2018. pap. $6.99. ISBN 9781338136449.
Gr 3–5—Budding marine biologist Lily discovers a dolphin in her Brooklyn neighborhood. With her two best friends away at soccer camp, 12-year-old Lily would like nothing more than to while away the summer at the Coney Island Aquarium. After spotting a stranded dolphin in the Gowanus Canal, Lily watches over the animal, developing an attachment to it. When the dolphin begins to sicken, biologists transport it to a tank at the aquarium. Time is running out to save the animal. Fans of Hapka's previous novel, Dolphin Dreams, will be eager to learn the dolphin's plight. Following one's passion despite opposition is a central theme here; Lily's parents don't respect her love of science. The portrayal of the human-dolphin bond will interest animal lovers, and descriptions of the work of a marine biologist provide some scientific backstory. The pacing falls short on suspense, and attentive readers will guess the story's outcome before the end. Promising characters are introduced and left underdeveloped, and conflicts with friends are wrapped up too neatly.
VERDICT An accessible read for those looking a lighthearted animal rescue tale. A secondary purchase.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.


Community matters. Stay up to date on breaking news, trends, reviews, and more.

Get access to 6000+ annual reviews of books, databases, and more

As low as $12/month