A Sandy Grave, by award-winning author, Donna McDine, is an inspiring story that chronicles the truth about poaching. Leah, Nicole, and Haley are ready to start their beach summer vacation; they sprint to the beach only to come across a crowd of people buzzing like bees near a dead whale that has washed ashore.
The girls watched in horror as scientists from the Marine Biology Institute examine the whale, then make a startling discovery. Someone has removed teeth from the whale.
Leah had noticed two men, who dug into the sand with their feet, dropped a bag into the hole, and covered it up. Her instincts tell her that the men are up to no good.
Will Leah report what she saw?
Unfortunately, poaching goes on all the time and many people get away with it.
There are many lessons young people can learn from reading A Sandy Grave. Here are two lessons that come to mind.
Doing the right thing: Leah and her friends help the authorities capture the two poachers. The girls do not allow fear to stop them even though it is a potentially dangerous situation. Below is my favorite section in the book:
They dropped down to their hands and knees and started to dig. They dug down about a foot, exposing a rope. Leah pulled on it, finding a burlap bag on the end of the rope. Curious, they opened it up, peered in, and saw huge teeth!
Teaching adult and kids about poaching: I love the way Ms. McDine related the truth about what can happen to poachers. The passage below is clear and concise.
It’s also against the law to tamper with a dead marine mammal. “What happens to people who try and steal the teeth,” Leah asked. “If caught, they’re arrested and can be charged with jail time and thousands of dollars in fines if found guilty.”
I love this well-written story. The illustrations by Julie Hammond capture the true essence of the story and pull the reader into the story.
To learn more about award-winning author Donna McDine, please visit her website.