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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Alex is a hermit crab living in the deep blue ocean. He really needs to find a new shell because he is quickly outgrowing his current shell. He looks all over the ocean floor, but each shell is either too big, too small, too ugly, or already occupied. What can he do? Just when he thinks things can’t get any worse, a big storm makes the ocean very rough and he is tossed all over the sea floor. The current pushes him into Ollie Oyster and Ollie’s pearl pops out, then is swept away with the current. Ollie is very distraught and Alex, feeling responsible, goes after the pearl. It becomes quite an adventure and the search for his new home is temporarily forgotten as Alex turns himself into a hero, intent on rescuing the pearl and narrowly escaping the possibility of becoming someone else’s lunch.
Daralyn Brody’s Alex and the New Shell is an adventure hero’s story with a different twist. Imagine a hermit crab becoming a superhero and imagine the adventures he has along the way. Alex is everything one could hope for in a hero and he learns a valuable lesson: that it doesn’t matter what his home (his shell) looks like. What really matters is what’s inside and what he can do to help those around him. The story is colorfully illustrated with charming sea world images to delight young readers, as well as to teach them something about the world beneath the ocean. A great story with a powerful message. Well done!