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Hercules the Harbor Tug
     

Hercules the Harbor Tug

by Michael O'Hearn, Mela Lyman (Illustrator)
 

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Imagine a busy harbor with many different kinds of ships and boats. The most important boat in the harbor is the tugboat. What exactly does it do? Noah and Tanika find out first hand when they spend an exciting day on a tugboat called Hercules.

Overview

Imagine a busy harbor with many different kinds of ships and boats. The most important boat in the harbor is the tugboat. What exactly does it do? Noah and Tanika find out first hand when they spend an exciting day on a tugboat called Hercules.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
O'Hearn, a nautical photo-journalist and writer, makes his children's book debut with this lively look at the goings-on in a bustling port. Readers accompany two children, Tanika and Noah, aboard the tug Hercules. The amiable captain, Lucy, shows the kids a ferry carrying people and cars; a dredger sucking up mud; tugs pulling a barge and guiding a cruise ship; and a crane unloading a freighter's cargo. Lucy describes each process as well as the Hercules's duties: towing a boom around a newly sunken ship to contain any leaking oil and carrying mail to an anchored tanker waiting for a place to dock. Lucy also explains the function of buoys and lighthouses, points out various marine species (a seal, porpoises, jellyfish, cormorants) and finally steers her craft to join a parade of tugboats. Never mind the questionable likelihood of sighting all this activity in one harbor on a single day-with his crisp prose and concise descriptions, O'Hearn imparts a good deal of information during this short cruise. And although her images of people are not as convincing as those depicting the harbor's hubbub, Lyman's grainy, boldly hued paintings convey the maritime excitement. All ages. (Mar.)
Children's Literature - Judith Times
Tugboats may be one of the smaller vessels in the harbor, but they are certainly one of the most important. Noah and Tanika have an exciting day in the harbor aboard the tug Hercules. They see that tugboats push large ocean liners into the harbor and pull heavy barges. Then the tug navigates through the channel to the site of a sunken ship that needs oil booms placed around it so the marine life is not endangered by the oil spill. Throughout the course of their trip, they see seals, fish, porpoises and friendly sea gulls. At the end of the day, Hercules returns to the harbor, and to Noah and Tanika's surprise, they meet several other tugs and join in the tugboat parade. O'Hearn has used a refreshing approach to provide descriptive and informative details about what happens in a busy harbor.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-A boring story detracts from an otherwise vibrant book. Noah and Tanika spend the day with Captain Lucy aboard a harbor tug and learn all about it. The main job of the day is to tow an oil boom around a sunken passenger boat to confine possible fuel leakage. As they motor through the bustling city harbor, they see all kinds of working boats and harbor paraphernalia, as well as water birds and animals. Boldly colored, expressionistic illustrations lend atmosphere to the book and the closeup and faraway views draw readers into the action. As an introductory source of information, this title is excellent; as a story, however, it is weak. The children seem to play the roles of ``straight men,'' asking questions so that facts may be supplied: this device gives a forced, wooden quality to the narrative.-Carolyn Jenks, First Parish Unitarian Church, Portland, ME

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780881068887
Publisher:
Charlesbridge Publishing, Inc.
Publication date:
02/01/1995
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
11.03(w) x 8.51(h) x 0.14(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Michael O'Hearn has been a contributor to many magazines, including Maine Costal News, New England Coastal News, and The Homesteader. He lives in Watertown, Massachusetts. Mela Lyman is an artist and teacher in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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