Dolphin Song by Lauren St John

Dolphin Song

Written by Lauren St John
Part of the White Giraffe Series Series

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

Lauren St John’s much-loved and critically acclaimed debut novel The White Giraffe came out in 2006 and Dolphin Song is his second African adventure. It’s a beautifully told story that screams out the sights and the sounds of Africa but it also has a mystery element to it that enriches the whole reading experience. The author travelled to Mozambique’s Bazaruto Archipelago where the story is set and is home to hundreds of wild dolphins and a true African paradise. Lauren says, ‘The sand is so clean that it squeaks when you walk, the water is aquamarine, and the islanders are extremely proud that their islands are friendly and free of crime.’


Dolphin Song by Lauren St John

It's June - winter in South Africa, and Martine and her grandmother are enjoying a cold but beautiful walk along the beach when they find a stranded, dying dolphin. Martine uses her gift of healing to help it back to the ocean but it's only the latest in a series of inexplicable beachings of dolphins and whales - and the start of a brand new adventure for Martine. After a last stolen midnight ride on her beloved white giraffe, Jemmy, Martine's class is off on an amazing school trip to the islands of Mozambique to witness the legendary 'Sardine Run'. It's a trip that goes drastically wrong and Martine, with close friend Ben, finds herself swimming in shark-infested waters, marooned on an uninhabited island and suddenly at the centre of mysterious submarine goings-on as she tries to save a pod of 100 dolphins from certain death. Like her debut novel, THE WHITE GIRAFFE, DOLPHIN SONG has plenty of action and adventure, and delves deeply into Martine's relationships with the people and animals around her. It makes her question the true nature of her gift, and what she will be called upon to do next.The incredible beauty of the flora and fauna of this little known corner of Africa is richly evoked as a result of Lauren's in depth knowledge and research of the area.


Unputdownable THE TEACHER A wonderful and exciting adventure THE SCHOOL LIBRARIAN

About the Author

Lauren St John

Lauren St John was our Guest Editor in August 2013 - you can see her book choices below.

Lauren St John was born in Gatooma, Rhodesia, now Kadoma, Zimbabwe. Aged 11 she and her family moved to Rainbow's End farm in Gadzema, which later became the subject of her memoir. After studying journalism, she relocated to England, where she was golf correspondent to The Sunday Times. She is the author of several books on sports and music, as well as the award-winning children's series The White Giraffe, Dolphin Song, The Last Leopard and The Elephant's Tale. Her latest book, One Dollar Horse, is published in March 2012.

Lauren St John has a fascinating life story and her captivating and haunting memoir about her childhood spent in rural Africa has been published. Rainbow's End captures the overwhelming beauty and extraordinary danger of life in the African bush and it's this life story that is the inspiration for many of her animal stories for children. This memoir is definitely not for children to read but we mention it here as parents of children reading Lauren's children's books may well like to read about this awe-inspiring author.

My Favourite Children’s Books by Lauren St John

For Love of a Horse by Patricia Leitch. Without doubt this is the book that inspired me most as a child. At the time I was living on a farm in Zimbabwe in Southern Africa and had a black horse called Morning Star and it seemed to me that the way I felt about him and Jinny Manders felt about the chestnut Arab mare she rescued from a circus in For Love of a Horse was identical. This series is just brilliant in every way. I’ve read each book at least five times and would happily do so again.

Journey to the River Sea by Eva Ibbotsen. To me, Eva Ibbotsen is a genius. You can pick up any of her books – The Dragonfly Pool and One Boy and His Dog are also fantastic – and be guaranteed a good read. A warm, joyous book to be enjoyed by any generation.

Five Run Away Together by Enid Blyton. I think I read my first Famous Five novel when I was six and I was hooked from that moment on. Sure there are bits of that have dated and Enid Blyton is not the world’s greatest prose stylist. But decades on, the appeal of the Famous Five is as strong as ever. Impossible to resist.

The Black Stallion by Walter Farley. The ultimate wish fulfillment fantasy, later made into an award-winning film. I’ve read this book more times than I can count and it never loses it’s magic. The film is great too.

Ring of Bright Water by Gavin Maxwell. I read this book as a set book at school in Zimbabwe and it had a big impact on me. Gavin Maxwell’s beautifully written book about his life with otters on Scotland’s remote west coast has been called a ‘masterpiece’ and ‘one of the outstanding wildlife books of all time.’ Anyone who loves animals and nature would enjoy this special book. Ring of Bright Water was later made into an outstanding film starring Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers.

The Tiger who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr. I fell in love with the smiley, chubby tiger in Judith Kerr’s classic picturebook during one hot Zimbabwe summer when I had to read it four or five times a day to my niece. If it had been up to her I’d have read it even more frequently. Each time I got to the end, she pleaded for us to begin again. Pure genius.

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Book Info


288 pages
Interest Age: From 9


Lauren St John
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Orion Publishing Co

Publication date

1st July 2008




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