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THE FIRST SURPRISE
The four Alden children, Henry, Jessie, Violet, and Benny ran all the way home. Their grandfather, Mr. Alden, had promised them a surprise.
School is out for the whole summer!
Was this the day I said I'd tell you?
You said you'd tell us the minute school was out.
Once upon a time, my father bought an island.
He bought one!
Yes. A small one. If you want to stay there all summer you may.
Mr. Alden drove them to the ocean. Dr. Moore and his mother came along to enjoy the fun.
Captain Daniel will take us in the motorboat across to the island.
There's our island! Our very own island!
You children are going to live in the barn!
As soon as they landed, the children ran straight to the barn.
Let's bring down some straw for beds.
I can cook plenty of things with this stove!
We can use these barrels and boards for a dinner table. Maybe I can make a cupboard for dishes.
While the children explored the barn. Captain Daniel asked Dr. Moore to look in on his friend.
Henry can make anything!
He's a very handy man, Joe is, but he hasn't been well.
Last year, I fell and broke my arm. or a long time I didn't know who I was.
Do you remember who you are now?
Joe told Dr. Moore who he was. But Joe wanted it to be a secret.
Your secret is safe with me Let me check your arm and be sure it is OK.
Joe is all right, Mr. Alden. He's a very fine fellow and Captain Daniel has known him all his life.
Soon the children were ready to stay on Mr. Alden's island for the summer.
Won't you be lonesome Grandfather?
I need a little rest without any children or dogs around.
Yes. The children will like him.
You won't hear Watch bark for a long time.
After taking Mr. Alden back home, Captain Daniel returned with supplies.
That night, the children ate dinner on the table that Henry had built. They washed their dishes in the spring outside. Then they went to bed.
Henry was the first to wake. He and Watch took a walk and were surprised by what they found nearby.
I wonder if this garden belongs to Captain Daniel.
How do you like your garden?
My name is Joe. I'm the handyman. Your grandfather had me plant it for you.
Look! We can have peas for dinner.
Henry, Jessie, and Violet picked peas. Joe had an important job for Benny.
Captain Daniel goes to the mainland every day. If you need anything, leave your order in this box.
This will be my job. I like to open the little door!
Henry, Jessie, and Violet had their own jobs to do.
How many places will we need in the cupboard, Jessie?
One shelf for spoons and things.
And one shelf for dishes.
And one for pans and kettles, and one more for groceries.
The morning passed quickly.
I made pea soup!
After lunch, the children walked on the beach.
Jessie, look at that!
The Alden children knew that everything seemed better when they had to work to get it.
Jessie and Henry brought spoons from the born. Everybody dug for clams, even Watch.
I'm going to keep mine.
You won't want to keep them when you find out how good they taste.
I suppose these are for dinner tomorrow.
Yes. These will keep all right with seaweed on top.
The next day, there was even more to explore.
Look at this funny shell. It is just like a little boat.
And look at this pretty purple flowers.
Let's save all the flowers and shells we find.
I have a great idea!
We can create a museum!
We are sure to find interesting things on this island to keep.
We found these things without looking.
We'll find butterflies, birds, seaweed ...
I think it's a wonderful idea.
Later, the children gathered the flowers, shells, seaweed, and driftwood they collected. Violet mode a list for the museum.
How can I write the names of these flowers and shells when I don't know their names?
We could get books from the library.
I'll ask Joe to get them for us!
A few hours later, Joe arrived with books from the library.
Won't you stay for dinner, Joe?
You'll be our first guest, but you'll have to wash your own dishes.
Now show us the books, Joel
Joe sure knows a lot about nature.
Joe and the children studied the new books. Joe seemed just as interested as they were.
How did you ever learn all this?
Oh, I just picked it up.
After Joe left, the Aldens went upstairs.
This is where we'll have the museum.
We can use this chair when Grandfather comes to visit.
Henry can build tables with these boards!
The next day, work on the museum began.
Joe gave me newspapers. And there was a box from Grandfather.
He sent sweaters!
Grandfather thinks it's going to get cold!
Now smooth the paper over the flower, like I learned in school.
What about the board?
Well put the board over the paper, and the rock too. That way the flowers will be pressed flat as they dry.
Later it started raining. They spent the next day setting up the museum.
The next day was warm again. The children went exploring.
What a big pile of shells!
It's taller A than Bennv!
Look, a little cave! Let's go in!
As they went farther into the cave they found several small rooms. Then Henry discovered something else.
It's an Indian arrowhead! What do you know?
Something's wrong! Watch never howls!
Henry Water is coming into the cave!
Excerpted from Surprise Island by Rob M. Worley, Stephanie Hedlund, Mike Dubisch. Copyright © 2009 Abdo Consulting Group, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of OPEN ROAD INTEGRATED MEDIA.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Posted February 19, 2013
Posted May 30, 2012
Even as I’m cringing at the thought of my children spending the summer alone on an island I remember the fantasy of doing it myself when I was their ages.
This series definitely appeals to the adventurous spirits but this particular book also appeals to the unlikely reader. It’s fairly short but filled with graphics and adventure.
A terrific read for 6-12 yr olds.
*P.S. I read this on an iPad and some of the text was a bit difficult to read. If you’re planning to read this on an ereader, please, grab a sample first and make sure that the text is legible!