The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story By Tina Cho & Jess X. Snow

Back of Book:
Dayeon wants to be a haenyeo just like Grandma. The haenyeo dive off the coast of Jeju Island to pluck treasures from the sea–generations of Korean women have done so for centuries. To Dayeon, the haenyeo are as strong and graceful as mermaids. To give her strength, Dayeon eats Grandma’s abalone porridge. She practices holding her breath while they do the dishes. And when Grandma suits up for her next dive, Dayeon grabs her suit, flippers, and goggles. A scary memory of the sea keeps Dayeon clinging to the shore, but with Grandma’s guidance, Dayeon comes to appreciate the ocean’s many gifts.
My Review:
I was very excited to read an advanced copy of this book on Edelweiss I remember watching a documentary about the amazing haenyeo women to dive down and bring back treasures to shore.
Author Tina Cho wrote a moving picture book about a Korean haenyeo and her granddaughter and their relationship to the sea. Dayeon wants to be a haenyeo just like her grandma, but her fear of the ocean keeps her close to the surface. In the end, Grandma helps her face her fears and successfully complete her first dive. The illustrations by Jess X. Snow are rich in color and textures that sweep readers into the story. The back of the book shares more information with readers about the history of haenyeo divers. This is a stunning story that showcases the beauty of older generations teaching younger generations about culture and tradition.
Ages 5 and up
48 Pages

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