The Big Island: A Story of Isle Royale by Julian May, illustrated by John Schoenherr

            The Big Island: A Story of Isle Royale by Julian May, illustrated by John Schoenherr, University of Minnesota Press, c1968, 2021, 2022. 9781517910693

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

Format: Hardcover

What did you like about the book? Isle Royale is a National Park in Lake Superior.  The island appeared when the water of the lake receded.  Over time plants began to grow; animals came by swimming (beavers) hitching a ride on logs (squirrels) or walking across the ice in winter from the mainland. Though the animals on the island had plenty of food, those on the mainland did not.  Some moose swam the fifteen miles across while others waited until the water froze to walk across.  Having no enemies on the island, the moose proliferated to the point of overabundance, thus the island could not support them all.  When wolves were trapped on an ice floe, they arrived on the island.  They ate the weak and sick among the moose.  When the ice melted, the wolves could not return to the mainland.  The balance of nature was restored.  Schoenherr’s wonderful illustrations, appearing to be watercolor and pencil, are done in forest colors of green, black, white and brown.

Anything you did not like about the book?  No.

To whom would you recommend this book? Readers who enjoy true stories about animals in the wild and the balance of nature will appreciate this story.

Who should buy this book? Public and elementary school libraries

Where would you shelve it? 599.7

Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No….

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Katrina Yurenka, Retired Librarian, Contributor, Youth Services Book Review

Date of Review: March 7, 2022

This entry was posted in *Book Review, *Starred Review, Animals, Balance of nature, Ecology, Islands, John Schoenherr, Julian May, Nature and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.