August 2, 2019

A Penguin Named Patience: A Hurrican Katrina Rescue Story, by Suzanne Lewis, illustrated by Lisa Anchin

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , at 1:00 am by suebe2

A Penguin Named Patience:
A Hurrican Katrina Rescue Story
by Suzanne Lewis,
illustrated by Lisa Anchin
Sleeping Bear Press

Patience was an African penguin so she was used to warmer weather than many of her penguin kin. But it was too hot and muggy at the Audubon Aquarium in New Orleans.  That’s because the power was out because of Hurricane Katrina. The power was out and it was getting dangerously hot for the penguins.

Patience is having troubles being patient when their keeper, Tom, finally shows up.  He tells them that he is working on moving them but he doesn’t know where.  When the Monterey Bay Aquarium agrees to take them in, he loads all nineteen penguins into carriers and takes them to the airport.

Tom sees them to their temporary home where the penguins settle in and enjoy the cool water. It was nine months before the penguins could be returned to their New Orleans home.

This is a true story so it is shelved in nonfiction.  That said, the reader also sees things through Patience’s perspective and reads her thoughts.  Thus the penguins have been anthropomorphized although the story is real.

An author’s note at the back of the book expands on the story.  Here Lewis explains that, in spite of the dedicated efforts of the staff, not all of the animals that lived at the aquarium could be saved. This information might be too harsh for some younger readers but tucked back in the author’s note it isn’t part of the main story.

Lisa Anchin’s illustrations continue to anthropomorphize Patience and her fellow penguins, giving them facial expressions to help readers interpret their emotions.  The soft colors show the penguins and their world clearly while keeping the turmoil at a bit of a distance, essential for some sensitive young readers.  This story illustrates the great lengths that zoos and their staff go to for the animals in their care.


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