Crab Moon
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Crab Moon

by Ruth Horowitz, Kate Kiesler
     
 

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Introduce young naturalists to the mysterious high tide of the horseshoe crabs.

One June night, under the full moon, Daniel’s mother wakes him up to see the extraordinary sight of horseshoe crabs spawning on the beach, just as they have every spring for an awesome 350 million years. But when Daniel returns in the morning, he finds only one lonely crab,

Overview

Introduce young naturalists to the mysterious high tide of the horseshoe crabs.

One June night, under the full moon, Daniel’s mother wakes him up to see the extraordinary sight of horseshoe crabs spawning on the beach, just as they have every spring for an awesome 350 million years. But when Daniel returns in the morning, he finds only one lonely crab, marooned upside down in the sand. Can he possibly save it? Like a perfect day at the beach, CRAB MOON leaves an indelible memory of a special adventure between parent and child, and a quiet message about doing our part to preserve even earth’s oldest creatures.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Children's Literature
Daniel and his family spend the summer in a cottage at the beach. Daniel's mother tells him about the horseshoe crabs, which spawn on the shore beneath the full moon. On the moonlit beach, Daniel watches in amazement as thousands of crabs clack together, burying eggs in the sand. The crabs have been making this pilgrimage for millions of years, since before the time of dinosaurs. The next day, only a lone crab, marooned upside down, remains on the deserted shore. Daniel sets the lonesome crab upright and sends it on its way back to the ocean. Lovely watercolor illustrations recreate the feeling of wonder that a child feels in discovering a new creature. A fact sheet provides detailed information about horseshoe crabs, whose population has been declining in recent years. 2000, Candlewick Press, Ages 6 to 8, $15.99. Reviewer: Christopher Moning—Children's Literature
Children's Literature
Daniel and his family arrive at their beach cottage in time to witness the magic of the spawning of horseshoe crabs in the full moon. As they have for millions of years, the multitude of crabs come ashore to lay, fertilize, and bury their eggs, then return to the sea. The next morning Daniel finds the beach empty except for one crab stuck on her back. He gently turns her over so she can return as well. "See you next summer" is his hope. The doublepage paintings framed with sandy borders are just naturalistic enough to carry us to the beach, to sense the wonder of the starry moonlit night that Kiesler suggests rather than details. She creates a sequence of very quiet scenes that help us feel our connection with these ancient creatures and their ritual, along with Daniel. A page of facts about horseshoe crabs is included. 2000, Candlewick Press, Ages 4 to 8, $15.99. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-On a summer weekend, Daniel, seven, and his family arrive at a seaside cottage. His mother remembers the seasonal spawning of horseshoe crabs on this selfsame shore when she was a child, and, at Daniel's urging, wakes him in the middle of the night to witness the phenomenon under the full moon. Hand in hand, they go to the moonlit beach and find the horseshoe crabs surging to the sand in clambering multitudes, caught in a springtide rhythm almost as old as time. The next morning, viewing the scene, Daniel finds "-one last, lonely crab marooned upside down," rights her, and follows her slow progress to the sea. Horowitz's quiet text reflects the moonlit awe of this ageless pattern, and Kiesler's luminous oils capture freeze-frame moments in perfect step (including the sandy borders and backgrounds). A page of Limulus facts is appended, which describes the stresses these ancient animals are encountering. Pair this with Mark Shasha's The Night of the Moonjellies (S & S, 1992; o.p.) for a quiet look at two unheralded, somewhat unlovely, but important marine creatures.-Patricia Manning, formerly at Eastchester Public Library, NY Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
Kirkus Reviews
June's full moon casts an atmospheric glow over Kiesler's (Old Elm Speaks, 1998) soft-focus shore scenes in this brief consciousness raiser. Seven-year-old David follows his mother down to the beach near their summer rental one night and watches, enchanted, as horseshoe crabs emerge to lay their eggs. The next morning, he finds an upended straggler, gingerly rights her, and watches her make her way, "quiet as a queen," back to the sea. Along with books such as Saviour Pirotta's Turtle Bay (1997), this conveys a respectful attitude toward sea- and shore-dwelling wildlife in an unpreachy way. Young children whose interest is piqued by David's brief encounter with such ancient, alien-looking creatures will welcome the concluding page of general horseshoe crab facts. (Picture book. 6-8)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780763623135
Publisher:
Candlewick Press
Publication date:
02/18/2004
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
148,925
Product dimensions:
10.65(w) x 9.25(h) x 0.15(d)
Age Range:
6 - 9 Years

Meet the Author

Ruth Horowitz is "drawn to species that get overlooked because they're not big-eyed or cuddly or cute. I hope this book will show readers the rewards of reaching out to a being that may seem utterly alien at first glance."

Kate Kiesler makes her home in the mountains but enjoyed painting the seashore. "On a snowy day I could walk into my studio and be at the beach. Sometimes I could almost smell the salty air."

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