×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

The Wreck of the Zanzibar
     

The Wreck of the Zanzibar

by Michael Morpurgo
 

See All Formats & Editions

The powerful tale of 14-year-old Laura Perryman is told through entries from her diary that she passes on to her great-nephew Michael. He is astonished to discover the remarkable details of her life in the 1900s on the stormy coast of Britain's Scilly Isles, where her family lives on the bounty, and at the mercy, of the ocean. 2 cassettes.

Overview

The powerful tale of 14-year-old Laura Perryman is told through entries from her diary that she passes on to her great-nephew Michael. He is astonished to discover the remarkable details of her life in the 1900s on the stormy coast of Britain's Scilly Isles, where her family lives on the bounty, and at the mercy, of the ocean. 2 cassettes.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Morpurgo (The War of Jenkins' Ear) spins a tale as compelling as it is unusual in its setting and plot. The story unfolds in journal entries and watercolor illustrations made by 14-year-old Laura Perryman in 1907 and 1908. She tells of her life on storm-battered Bryher Island, among Britain's Scilly Isles, where her family's survival depends on the mercy of the elements and, especially, the sea. This winter is particularly harsh, with the family's cows sickening and dying, the weather destroying houses and boats, the food stores dwindling and Laura's twin brother, Billy, running away to join a ship's crew. All anyone can hope for is a shipwreck, that the people of Bryher might salvage its cargo. As bleak as Laura's days are, she is gentle enough to protect a sea turtle that might otherwise serve as food, and hopeful enough to dream of rowing in the island gig despite repeated declarations that a girl will never be allowed to handle one of the oars. Laura gets her chance in a dramatic storm and shipwreck, and she helps save the island. A hearty, old-fashioned survival tale that should appeal equally to both sexes. Ages 10-14. (Oct.)
Children's Literature - Jyotsna Sreenivasan
It's 1907, and 14-year-old Laura Perryman is living on storm-swept Bryher Island. Laura wants more than anything to row out, in her family's gig, to help the crews and salvage cargo from the ships that have been wrecked off the island-but although she is an excellent rower, she is not allowed to join the men. However, when the Zanzibar is caught in a storm, Laura is pressed into service rowing out to save the men and the supplies. She performs heroically, and one of the people saved is her dear brother Billy. A stark, well-told tale that brings to life Laura's ambition and emotional strength as well as the hardships and beauty of Bryher Island. All are aptly captured in the remarkable watercolor illustrations.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 3-5Michael Morpurgo proves he is as adept as a narrator as he is an author in this fascinating glimpse of life long ago on tiny Bryher Island (Viking, pap. 1995). When Michael's Great Aunt Laura dies, she bequeaths to him a diary that she kept when she was a young girl. Chronicled in the tattered pages is the tale of her twin brother Billy who flees the harshness of his father's way of life for the call of the open sea, leaving behind a family devastated by his absence and prey to a series of natural disasters. Longing for Billy's return, Laura places her faith in his ties to those he loves, believing that he will come back and life will return to normal. One day Laura finds a huge leatherback turtle beached on shore and slowly dying. Her desperate efforts to save the turtle forge a bond with her grandmother and reinforce their hope that a miracle will save them from abandoning their beloved island. When the miracle finally does come, it takes the unlikely form of a wrecked ship called the Zanzibar and provides even more than they had dared hope for. Morpurgo's sonorous voice with its subtle accent draws listeners deeper and deeper into this well-written and well-rendered tale of a young girl's belief in the power of love.Cindy Lombardo, Ashland Public Library, OH
Carolyn Phelan
Spare but lyrical, this short novel begins with a first-person framework story in which a man revisits the Scilly Island home of his great-aunt Laura after her death. There, he finds that she has left him the diary she kept when she was 14. It was the year her brother ran off to sea, the year that misfortune visited and revisited her island home, the year that she and her grandmother saved a turtle stranded by the sea, the year the sea saved her neighbors and restored her family through a shipwreck. Throughout the book, Francois Place's small watercolor paintings reflect the innocence, pain, and grace of the story. The illustrated diary format has its appeal, giving immediacy to a setting removed in time and place, but the story's main strength lies in the telling.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780754078463
Publisher:
BBC Audiobooks America
Publication date:
02/01/2003

Related Subjects

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews