Haysoos the Honu
Author: Kristin Barnes
Publisher: Mascot Books (2012)
Binding: Hardcover, 38 pages
Haysoos the Honu is a Hawaiian sea turtle. He loves the company of other creatures, but he feels different from the fish, eels, and manta rays. His bulky shell slows him down, and his lungs mean he has to interrupt playtime to surface for air. Haysoos believes that being different is a bad thing, until he meets a special friend who shows him just how special it is to be different!
Haysoos the Honu is the beautifully written and illustrated story of Haysoos, a Hawaiian sea turtle. He struggles because he sees himself as being “different” due to having a hard shell, which is unlike the other sea creatures he swims with in the ocean. Being a Honu meant traveling the ocean alone, but Haysoos loved to be around other creatures. But he discovered that because of his heavy shell, he couldn’t keep up with the other creatures, or just when he was having some fun, he would have to leave to surface for air. Haysoos learns some important life lessons from both a great white shark and a wise old turtle. I can say from experience, that I’ve used this book with third graders who loved the story and could apply it to their own lives. I recommend this book for families and teachers, as the message comes through that we should each discover how our differences can make us special…if we only let them.
Reviewed by: Joyce M. Gilmour (2012)