cover image The Seagull and the Sea Captain

The Seagull and the Sea Captain

Sy Montgomery, illus. by Amy Schimler-Safford. S&S/Wiseman, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-5344-8224-1

Science writer Montgomery begins this real-life story of an unlikely friendship with views of two voyages: a schooner carrying passengers out from Gloucester Harbor, and a group of gulls “riding the wind on their strong, outspread wings.” Vintage-inflected spreads by Schimler-Safford glow with the blues of the sea and the whites of the sails and the gulls’ wings. In a connecting moment, a herring gull with a missing toe spies the schooner and lands next to its captain for a closer look: both think the other is “a sharp dresser.” The captain, who presents as white, feeds the bird an oyster cracker and calls him “Polly Five Toes.” As readers spot both figures on the bay throughout the spreads, the two also learn to recognize one another, forming a lasting bond that leads to a suspenseful sequence in this true story of human-animal companionship. Back matter offers more information about gulls. Ages 4–8. (Mar.)