Book Review: The Boy, The Whale, and the Hermit Crab by Katherine Fazio (author) and Tatiana Ross (illustrator)
A story to help children understand their dyslexia with reading and writing and how to use their secret superpowers
This is a picture book about a dyslexic child who learns to embrace his strengths and use them to overcome his challenges.
Kilian struggles in school due to his dyslexia and is bullied and called stupid by his classmates. When he tries to read, the letters in his book move and jump about, and his mind goes blank.
But his mind also takes him on a new adventure. Kilian goes to the ocean where he builds a submarine and heads into the ocean with a hermit crab. When the submarine breaks down, he becomes discouraged and feels incapable of repairing it due to his dyslexia. With the help of an old wise whale, he realizes that his different way of learning also comes with unique strengths. Soon he has a new way to focus his mind and to use his special talent for visualizing and problem solving.
Author Katherine Fazio was inspired to write this book because of her real-life experiences with her son. She wrote, “I remember feeling overwhelmed when my son was diagnosed with dyslexia. I felt hopeless and scared. I did not know where to start.”
Fortunately, she learned about the Davis program. After working with Facilitator Christina Tan, Katherine explained, “It was the best thing that ever happened to us. The program brought forth change for him and clarity for our family. The contrast was like day and night, and I could see the changes taking place, even though it was just under two weeks.”
This book is not a description of a specific intervention, but rather a joyful combination of fantasy and real-world challenges, written to help young children understand what’s happening inside their brains, and to rekindle their excitement about learning.