Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out!

Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out!

April Pulley Sayre
Illustrator:  Annie Patterson 
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Charlesbridge, 2010   ISBN: 978-1580891493

One night, on a beach in Florida, Mother Turtle lays her eggs, carefully covering the clutch with sand before she goes back into the water. Thankfully for one of the baby turtles, there are people who protect her and her siblings. They protect the eggs so that they have a chance to hatch, and one moonlit night in August Turtle and her brothers and sisters dig their way out of the sand and head for the ocean.

The world is a dangerous place when you are a tiny baby turtle. Turtle has to avoid the snapping jaws of hungry fish. She almost eats a plastic bag, which so much resembles the jellyfish that she likes to eat.

When she is grown and out in the deep ocean, she needs to avoid hungry sharks, and she almost gets caught in a net. Luckily, the net has an escape hatch built into it that was put there just so that turtles like her would not drown in the nets.

In this beautiful picture book Annie Patterson tells a gripping story about the life of a female turtle, following her over the years from the moment she is laid in an egg, to the moment when she lays her own clutch of eggs on a beach. Patterson focuses on the many dangers the turtle faces and shows her reads how people can help turtles by guarding their nests, cleaning the beaches, and installing Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) in their fishing nets.

A section at the back of the book provides more information about sea turtle conservation, and it also shows children how they can help turtles even if they don’t live on or near a beach.