- Picture books
New York :
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
- First edition
- Physical Description
- 1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 24 cm
- Main Author
Sima's sweet debut features an adorable unicorn with an identity problem. Kelp has spent his whole life living underwater with a pod of narwhals—he wears a glass helmet with a hole for his horn—and he's always known he's different. Luckily, the narwhals don't seem to mind, even when he must wear water wings to swim. But when a strong current takes him close to shore and he spies creatures that look just like him, his curiosity is sparked, so he sets out on land and eventually finds them: "Land narwhals!" he says, to which a land narwhal replies, "Actually, we're unicorns. And by the looks of it, so are you!" Kelp worries about having to choose between the land and sea, but the unicorns and narwhals are a resourceful, understanding bunch, and they come up with a solution that makes everyone happy. Sima's bubbly, adorable artwork is nearly irresistible, particularly tiny Kelp, whose cartoonish gestures and expressions unmistakably communicate his emotions. This endearing tale will warm many a heart. Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews
Kelp has a narwhal-like horn, but it's kind of short, and he has trouble swimming like the other narwhals. On land, he discovers why: he's a unicorn. (Kelp has a transparent diving helmet, so breathing underwater is no problem.) Fortunately, both unicorns and narwhals accept him warmly: "he didn't have to choose." Newcomer Sima's plot holds few surprises—it's pretty much a standard-issue, born-in-the-wrong-family tale—but her adorable characters trigger smiles throughout, whether it's the newborn Kelp tucked snugly into a sea scallop or unicorns using their horns to toast marshmallows. Vignettes show Kelp unsuccessfully imitating crabs ("Oof") and frogs ("Ow") as he tries learning to walk, reassuring readers that they're not the only ones who struggle to master new skills. By contrast, the text eschews cuteness for dry humor: "Land narwhals!" exclaims Kelp upon seeing unicorns for the first time. "Actually we're unicorns," says an adult, as the other unicorns cavort through rainbows and freshets of clear water. "And by the looks of it, so are you!" Naturally, the story concludes with a festive party for both single-horned species. Ages 4–8. Agent: Thao Le, Sandra Dijkstra Literary. (Feb.) Copyright 2016 Publisher Weekly.Review by School Library Journal Reviews
PreS-Gr 2—The "not quite" narwhal in this story is Kelp, an adorable unicorn, born underwater and living with an equally adorable school of narwhals. His tusk is kind of short, he's not a very good swimmer, and narwhal food is just gross, but his life is pretty great. Kelp is accepted by the narwhals, and he accepts himself as he is. But one day, a strong current drops him on a beach, where he learns to walk (after hysterically imitating a crab and a frog, he finds that a turtle is the best model) and discovers a whole herd of "land narwhals" who look just like him. Little Kelp's new life is awash in rainbows and unicorns—he almost doesn't want to go home. Of course, home isn't quite the same after his adventure, but luckily everyone is on his side. The narwhals and unicorn meet at the beach, and Kelp ends his story in the best of both worlds. Sima draws digitally on a Wacol drawing tablet and has created charming undersea and overland settings on full-bleed spreads. Her narrative is short, with a storyteller's pacing and winning characters, resulting in an appealing book. Read it for a whimsical storytime or provide some text-to-text connections for older students with Amy Krouse Rosenthal's Uni the Unicorn and Bob Shea's Unicorn Thinks He's Pretty Great. VERDICT Useful for ELA curricula and sure to circulate, this title is highly recommended.—Lisa Lehmuller, Paul Cuffee Maritime Charter School, Providence Copyright 2016 School Library Journal.
Born under the sea to a family of narwhals, a little unicorn begins questioning his differences when an extra-strong current sweeps him to the ocean's surface, where he discovers other creatures like himself. A first picture book. Simultaneous eBook.Review by Publisher Summary 2
Born deep in the ocean, Kelp is not like the other narwhals and one day, when he spies a creature on land that looks like him, he learns why.Review by Publisher Summary 3
In the tradition of Uni the Unicorn and Gaston, this heartwarming and adorable debut picture book tells the story of a young unicorn who was born under the sea to a family of narwhals.Growing up in the ocean, Kelp has always assumed that he was a narwhal like the rest of his family. Sure, he's always been a little bit different'his tusk isn't as long, he's not as good of a swimmer, and he really doesn't enjoy the cuisine. Then one night, an extra strong current sweeps Kelp to the surface, where he spots a mysterious creature that looks just like him! Kelp discovers that he and the creature are actually unicorns. The revelation leaves him torn: is he a land narwhal or a sea unicorn? But perhaps, if Kelp is clever, he may find a way to have the best of both worlds.Told with heartwarming illustrations and spare, sweet text, Jessie Sima's debut picture book is about fitting in, standing out, and the all-encompassing love of family.Review by Publisher Summary 4
This New York Times bestseller is soon to be an animated series on Netflix!In the tradition of Uni the Unicorn and Gaston, this heartwarming and adorable debut picture book tells the story of a young unicorn who was born under the sea to a family of narwhals.Growing up in the ocean, Kelp has always assumed that he was a narwhal like the rest of his family. Sure, he’s always been a little bit different—his tusk isn’t as long, he’s not as good of a swimmer, and he really doesn’t enjoy the cuisine. Then one night, an extra strong current sweeps Kelp to the surface, where he spots a mysterious creature that looks just like him! Kelp discovers that he and the creature are actually unicorns. The revelation leaves him torn: is he a land narwhal or a sea unicorn? But perhaps, if Kelp is clever, he may find a way to have the best of both worlds.Told with heartwarming illustrations and spare, sweet text, Jessie Sima’s debut picture book is about fitting in, standing out, and the all-encompassing love of family.