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Wild Dolphin Rider, by Donovan, SpellmanWild Dolphin Rider

by Nancy Donovan, illustrated by Susan Spellman

A magical dolphin takes a young boy for a ride, revealing the wonders, and dangers, of life in the open ocean.

Through the magic of desire, Sean discovers he can speak with Mari, a young dolphin mother, who takes him aboard her back for a day on the ocean. But just beyond the harbor jetty, Mari’s pod is scattered by a tuna fleet, and Sean soon wonders if either he or the pod will survive to tell the tale. Searching for Mari’s missing son, they confront the dangers of the sea—from lost drift nets to lightning storms—and readers learn how different life is for wild dolphins from those in captivity.

The book is perfect for teachers looking for adventure stories based around science and conservation. It’s also great for both family reading and independent reading by older children. The book includes the story of the pod’s quest to reunite, followed by an interview with Mari, a glossary, information on dolphin biology and ecology, and a summary of current protections for these intelligent marine creatures.

About the Author and the Illustrator

NANCY DONOVAN is a writer of children’s stories, a poet and a potter. Her books, Oscar The Herring Gull, and Marissa the Forest Spirit are in bookstores, toy stores and historical places on the New Hampshire seacoast. Her poems are included in three anthologies published by the New Hampshire Poetry Society. Her books and pottery are also available at Just Us Chickens artist co-op in Kittery ME. Nancy may be contacted at

Author website:

SUSAN SPELLMAN is a fine artist and illustrator who resides in Newburyport, Massachusetts. She illustrates for Highlights magazine and has illustrated more than thirty titles for children since 1979, including: Mabel Takes a Paddle, by Emily Chetkowski, Draw History, the Civil War, by Nancy Clayton and Pinky & Bubs' Stinky Night Out, by Frankie Spellman.

Ordering Information

Pub Date: April 14, 2015 – National Dolphin Day! Illustrated softcover, $14.95, 80pgs, 5.5x8, 30 graphite illus., 7-12 yrs.
ISBN 978-1-942155-04-1
To order copies of Wild Dolphin Rider, Oscar the Herring Gull, or Marissa please contact the author directly: Email or call (603) 926-3916.


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