Book Reviews of Island of the Blue Dolphins

Island of the Blue Dolphins
Island of the Blue Dolphins
Author: Scott O'Dell
ISBN-13: 9780440439882
ISBN-10: 0440439884
Publication Date: 3/1/1987
Pages: 192
Reading Level: Young Adult
Rating:
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 697

4 stars, based on 697 ratings
Publisher: Yearling
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

70 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 423 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 8
What a wondeful book! It was sad and yet inspirational. This young woman has so much inner strength and wisdom and an abundance of hope and optimism. Through tragedy after tragedy she just keeps on going simply for the sake of meeting the next day head-on. Loved it loved it loved it!
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 124 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
I have loved this book ever since I was 9 years old, and I still do.
It is one of those stories you can never get tired of reading.
Perfect for all age groups.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on
Helpful Score: 3
It's funny how many people read this in school and bought their own copy. I have always loved this book since I read it in school. A must for everyone to read.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on
Helpful Score: 3
A wonderful tale of self-reliance and survival. I read this book in elementary school and it's one of those stories that has stayed with me all these years. It's a great story for youngsters especially girls.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 157 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I read this book thinking (once I figured out what the book was about) all about how Robinson Crusoe has inspired an inordinate number of stories - enough to necessitate the label Robinsonnade, and idly wondering why it's such a compelling story and why it gets retold so many times and how it's a different story than "the new person in town" or "on the road."

Then, when I finished, it turns out, this story is basically true! Blew my tiny little mind, that did. And knowing that it happened to a real person, well, that answered my idle wondering. I felt that drop in my stomach that the Robinson Crusoe story can produce, that hollow longing, that sweet sadness that is nonetheless beautiful and joyful. And it really happened.

Highly recommend this for any tween.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 8 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This is an amazing book. i read it through school then had to go out and buy my own copy. i would recomend this book if you survival or suspence stories.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 7 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I am one of those that read this book as a child and remembered being fond of it then. My oldest child has just finished it and has added it to her "top favs" list. This book is timelessly wonderful!
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on
Helpful Score: 1
This is the best survival book ever.
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Helpful Score: 1
Read it with my mom when younger. Great book!
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Helpful Score: 1
I read this book in 4th grade and will never forget it. So incredibly sad and touching. It is my all-time favorite book.
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Helpful Score: 1
Story is about a young girl marooned on this island which is her home. The rest of her tribe has been removed but she swam back from the ship when she realized that her brother was left behind. However, her brother is killed by the wild dog pack that lives on the island, too, which leaves her alone until she injures the leader of the dog pack that she heals and befriends. Very good.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 60 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This is a good historical novel of a differnt type than the usual historical fiction. It is based on a true story about a girl who was stranded without her tribe when Vikings came and attacked her village, taking slaves with them. She a strong young girl, very inspiring to read about with your daughters. There is a teachable follow up for "homeschoolers" or "afterschoolers" because you can research the girls history. Try an internet search, and include the term "California".
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 100 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
An excellent read. Karana, the heroine, is so strong, smart and resiliant. A compassionate and wonderful role model for girls (and boys) of all ages, despite her unique and tragic circumstances. In the Author's Note, I learned this book is based on a true story! That made this book even more extraordinary for me. Highly recommended reading for all.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on
Helpful Score: 1
I enjoyed Island of the Blue Dolphins, but it was a little hard to get into. Don't give up though because the rest was great!Some parts might be scary for kids 8 and under. One thing thats cool is it's based on a true story.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 17 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Scott O'Dell wrote this book with astonishing brevity. The language is simple, pure and honest. I think the hallmark of great writing is that each word and sentence is necessary, no more no less. An extraordinary book told without sentimentality.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 16 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Read this MANY years ago and loved it. Great story for boys or girls 8-12.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 33 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I have been an avid reader since I was small. This is one of the first books that I feel in love with. I still pick it up and read all these years later.
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Helpful Score: 1
I read this book at the perfect time in my life and it has stayed with me ever since.
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Helpful Score: 1
Great book and is reading level 5.5.
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Helpful Score: 1
I remember loving this book in my youth.
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Helpful Score: 1
Island Of the Blue Dolphins makes good reading for people of all ages. Scott Odell truly captured the essence of life, survival and what's important.
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Oh, this is a wonderful story. I loved it as much as my children.
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A beautiful story that I read as a young girl and just re-read. It has always stuck in my mind as a story that I greatly enjoyed (and still do). A must read, really. Based on a true story.
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Good survival story.
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i great book a must-read-before-you-die
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First Line: I remember the day the Aleut ship came to our island.

I'm not quite sure how I missed this one growing up. With a 1960 copyright date, it was certainly around when I was young, but somehow it got lost in the shuffle, and I never read it. I've now corrected that oversight, and I'm glad I did.

In the Pacific Ocean, there is an island that looks like a big fish sunning itself in the sea. Blue dolphins, sea elephants, birds, otters... wildlife is abundant there. When the strangers come in their red-sailed ship, Karana's father reluctantly gives them permission to fish and to hunt for otters in their waters, but their hunting comes to a bad end. Not long afterward, a ship comes for Karana's people, and they gather their belongings and climb aboard. When Karana sees that her little brother is left behind on the island, she jumps ship and swims back.

Unfortunately Karana soon finds herself all alone on the island. She spends year after year there, but this isn't a tale merely of survival, it's a story of a girl who truly appreciates the natural world surrounding her. My eyes were riveted to the page as she built herself shelter, a canoe, fought off wild dogs, and explored the island. An author's note in the back told me that this story was based on fact, and that explanation made the book even more special.

I can see why this book is a Newbery Medal winner. Island of the Blue Dolphins has a wonderful setting and a character into whom we can all project ourselves. It wasn't just Karana building a shelter or trying to outsmart the wild dogs-- I was, too. When I finished the last page, I had to sit quietly and let the sea breeze calm and the vision of a fish-shaped island sunning itself in the sea quietly fade away.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 17 more book reviews
Island of the Blue Dolphins is a beautifully written book. The heroine is a good example for girls because she is an independent, creative, and smart girl. This book is really good for book clubs, summer reading, or for language arts classes. This book is mostly for ages 9-12.
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In the Pacific there is an island that looks like a big fish sunning itself in the sea. Around it, blue dolphins swim, otters play and sea elephants and sea birds abound. Once, indians also lived on the island. And when they left and sailed to the east, one young girl was left behind. This is the story of Karana, the indian girl who lived alone for years on the island of the Blue Dolphins. Year after year, she watched one season pass into another and waited for a ship to take her away. ut while she waited, she kept herself alive by building shelter, making weapons, finding food, and fighting her enemies, the wild dogs.
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Another fantastic book from Scott O'Dell. I've read this book probably 20 times
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Newberry Award Winner
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Read the whole book without realizing it was a true story. Was a very interesting read, and enjoyed it a lot. Wish she could have communicated better with her rescuers so her story would have been more complete.
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Literature Association named this riveting story one of the 10 best American children's books of the past 200 years. O'Dell was inspired by the real-life story of a 12-year-old American Indian girl, Karana. The author based his book on the life of this remarkable young woman who, during the evacuation of Ghalas-at (an island off the coast of California), jumped ship to stay with her young brother who had been abandoned on the island. He died shortly thereafter, and Karana fended for herself on the island for 18 years.
O'Dell tells the miraculous story of how Karana forages on land and in the ocean, clothes herself (in a green-cormorant skirt and an otter cape on special occasions), and secures shelter. Perhaps even more startlingly, she finds strength and serenity living alone on the island. This beautiful edition of Island of the Blue Dolphins is enriched with 12 full-page watercolor paintings by Ted Lewin,
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 13 more book reviews
Absolutly love this book. I am a school teacher & we read this every year in class. It is a great book to teach children independance, self confidance, & how to cherish & respect the land. Great story line!
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Family, Young Adult, Horror, Drama, Realistic Fiction
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Wonderful book
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This is still one of my all time favorite books. I just re-read it for the first time in about 25 years. I first encountered this story when I was in 4th grade. It is easy to understand and very heart-felt. A classic. I would recommend it to any young reader (and even older readers). I remember crying the first time I read it. I didn't cry this time but it still touched me emotionally. Its a beautiful story. I found it fascinating to read up on the history/facts behind this story--made it all the more endearing. I highly recommend it!
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 138 more book reviews
Set in the 1800's on an isolated island off the coast of California, I'd once heard this book described as the left coast's answer to Squanto. This book is different though in that it's one girls tale of losing her people, meeting European explorers and becoming marooned alone on an island for many years. It's a cross between My Side of the Mountain, Robinson Crusoe and Hatchet.

It's a short first person read that draws in the reader and gives one an idea what it really might have been like to live on that island at that time. The accepting, matter of fact attitude of the main character might well be inspiring to many youths who today think that they have it tough.

At 186 pages, it's well worth investing the time to read it. The reader will gain perspectives and images that will stick with them much longer than many other books of this length
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My favorite all time children's story. I first loved the movie as a child and then loved the book even more.
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A story of a young girl's journey from childhood to adulthood. She is left on an island alone, and must fend for herself. A captivating read for any young child, this book, like O'Dell's others, provides a strong female rolemodel for young girls and boys alike.
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I read this book in 6th grade & never ever forgot it. Wonderful!
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Voted by my 4th grade class the best book we've read this year (out of 4) by a landslide.
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This is a beautiful read-aloud for your elementary aged children. Each night, my children begged me to read "one more chapter, pleeeeeease".
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this book is great.if you like survival stories youll love it.its a bit simple in thewording but a twenty two year old i know loved it, so you cant sat its for kids.a good book for people who dont like to read.
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This was a great story.
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I loved this book! I have read it over and over. The author tells a great story and makes it easy to imagine the world that this girl is living in.
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Just finished reading this book with my 10 year old daughter. We did not want it to end. It is slow at parts and can be meticulous in details, however, we thoroughly enjoyed the book and visited a few websites about San Nicholas Islands, of which the book is about. Great story and wonderful bonding experience.
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An amazing story of a young woman's survival...I loved it.
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This is an excellent book a must read!!!
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 87 more book reviews
Scott O'Dell won the Newbery Medal for Island of the Blue Dolphins in 1961, and in 1976 the Children's Literature Association named this riveting story one of the 10 best American children's books of the past 200 years. O'Dell was inspired by the real-life story of a 12-year-old American Indian girl, Karana. The author based his book on the life of this remarkable young woman who, during the evacuation of Ghalas-at (an island off the coast of California), jumped ship to stay with her young brother who had been abandoned on the island. He died shortly thereafter, and Karana fended for herself on the island for 18 years
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 203 more book reviews
A wonderful book that I remember from years back!
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A great award-winning classic.
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One of my favorite books from childhood.
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Very good book.
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This is one of my favorite children's books.
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Newbury award winner , the story of Karana, the Indian girl who lived alone for years on the island of the Blue Dolphins. Hers is not only an unusual adventrue of survival but also a tale of natural beauty and personal discovery
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very good book
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Always a classic - loved by all.
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I personally hated this book. It's to depressing and boring. I will not recommend this.
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FUN FUN FUN exciting read for kids! Had a blast reading this book!
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classic book read in all schools
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wonderful story. an older paperback so it is slightly yellowed
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My book is much older with a differnt cover but just as good of a read.
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This is a yearling book.
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teen reading
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cover slightly folded
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This was an okay book. I read it in the 6th grade and I think it's time for it to go. Here is the summary from the back of the book. . .

"In the Pacific there is an island that looks like a big fish sunning itself in the sea. Around it blue dolphins swim, otters play, and sea elephants and sea birds abound. Once, Indians also lived on the island. And when they left and sailed to the east, one young girl was left behind.

This is the story of Karana, the Indian girl who lived alone for years on the Island of the Blue Dolphins Year after year she watched one season pass into another and waited for a ship to katke her away. But while she waited, she kept herself alive by building shelter, making weapons, finding food, and fighting her enemies, the wild dogs. Hers is not only an unusual adveture fo survival, but also a tale fo natural beauty and personal discovery."
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on + 479 more book reviews
In the Pacific there is an island that looks like a big fish sunning itself in the sea. Around it, blue dolphins swim, otters play, and sea elephants and sea birds abound. Once, Indians also lived on the island. And when they left and sailed to the east, one young girl was left behind. This is the story of Karana, the Indian girl who lived alone for years on the Island of the Blue Dolphins. Year after Year, she watched one season pass into another and waited for a ship to take her away. But while she waited, she kept herself alive by building a shelter, making weapons, finding food, and fighting the enemies, the wild dogs. It is not only an unusual adventure of survival, but also a tale of natural beauty and personal discovery.
reviewed Island of the Blue Dolphins on
In the Pacific there is an island that looks like a big fish sunning itself in the sea. Around it, blue dolphins swim, otters play, and sea elephants and sea birds abound. Once, Indians also lived on the island. And when they left and sailed to the east, one young girl was left behind.
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Book is in excellent condition and has a protective plastic covering.
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Different cover