You know what I love? Well okay, one of the things I love? Picture books that have meat to them. These are books that not only entertain a child, but also teach. Marie’s Ocean introduces us to the life and work of Marie Tharp. Don’t know who she is? A remarkable woman you lived in a time when what women could do work-wise was limited, and yet, she forever left her mark in history. This is my review for Raincoast books.
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Who is Marie Tharp
In Marie’s Ocean we get to know about Marie Tharp, a girl who was fascinated by the world from the time she was quite young. She was determined that one day she would sail on a ship. One obstacle – she lived in a time when women were not welcome aboard a working ship. They were considered bad luck… it took years before she was able to work on a ship, but in the meantime, she studied and worked. Eventually, she proved there was a rift, and through that, the theory of continental drift.
What do you get?
I received an ARC version of Marie’s Ocean for this review. You’ll find it comes as a hardcover picturebook of 68 pages. Published by Henry Holt and Company Books for Young Readers, and written by Josie James. After reading this woman’s biography I find myself wondering if Ms. James will tackle any other women of history.
Written with children 5-9 years old, I can easily see older students using this well-illustrated picture book was a primer for a study of Marie Tharp.
The finer details for Marie’s Ocean
Josie James is both author and illustrator. I enjoyed learning how sounding works and seeing the paths the ships took. It was excellent to learn her work progressed as she worked through her studies.
This mixed-format picture book is detailed in both illustration and word. We are privy to her thoughts and explorations, an excellent primer into the life she lived so well.
I found the variety in which the material was presented an integral part of the story. Seeing her bravery in standing up for her findings, her dismay that she couldn’t present her own work, observing her discoveries, and the pictures of what it all means.
At the close of the book we’re given the rest of Marie’s story and how for so long she and her work forgotten. She is now known as one of the four greatest woman cartographers.
Should you Get Marie’s Ocean?
If you have any interest in oceanography, geography, science, noted women of history, numerology, or more….you can find much of interest in Marie’s Ocean. This meaty picturebook is a great introduction to all those fields. Teaching children what you can do as a woman if you are good with numbers, or are determined to follow your dream, or just want to follow where your research takes you.
Marie was so patient and yet observant, willing to speak her observations and prove them. There is so much you can do with it, the biggest of course is… just enjoying the story! So go out, get a new book for your shelves. 🙂