Hello. I am a children’s librarian.  I love original, well-told stories that encourage a child to think and respect their intelligence, interests and ideas.  I don’t underestimate the power of fiction. This blog was inspired by a fictional character, Charlotte from E.B.White’s Charlotte’s Web.  Charlotte is a spider who did what she could do, she spun a web of words, to stop Wilbur the pig from being slaughtered. I was thinking ‘there must be something I can do’ to help Morgan a whale held in terrible conditions in Loro Parque, Tenerife.   Morgan is a female whale who was captured from the wild and is now on exhibit in a tank that is too small, she is in poor health and is all alone.  Her sad life makes me think why parents would take their children to see such unhappiness and what I could do to help free Morgan.  Read more about Morgan here: http://www.freemorgan.org/

Like Charlotte, we all have the power to help in our own way.  I began by examining the books in my school library and found that several of them showed whales and dolphins held in captivity as though it was normal, educational and entertaining.  It isn’t.  Fortunately, in many countries keeping whales and dolphins in captivity is perceived by the public as distasteful and/or is illegal. Working in an international environment I feel I owe it to my students to show this ‘other side’ and give them the information they need to make their own choices.  I read all the whale and dolphin books and started by withdrawing out-of-date titles and those that were focused on a specific country (SeaWorld is NOT the world).  This has now extended to looking more closely at fiction.  I found that children’s fiction treated whales and dolphins with more respect than many of the non-fiction titles.  Many fiction writers have a greater understanding of animal behaviour, many of them show the relationship and the connectivity between humans and animals and the planet.  Many of them are exceptionally good, award-winning reads.  W is for Whale has been created for Morgan and for all animals who deserve a better life.


Photographs from The Free Morgan Foundation

“When we try to pick anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.” John Muir (1838-1914)

“Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty.”  Albert Einstein (1879-1955)


“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948)



W is for Whale

Follow on Pinterest