“To the World Above,” by Rebecca Stelly, Ally-Gator BookBites Publishing House, 67 pages, $24.95.


If you live in a desert under the sea like Ruke does, you, too, might try to contact the world above.

When he tossed up the message in a bottle, he actually got an answer. In the bottle were questions — questions asking what was it like under the sea.

Ruke’s home is a ship, the Dare, that is stuck on the bottom of the sea.

His home is powered with light from an underwater power plant which is fortunate since they have no light from the sun nor the moon. Small glow-in-the-dark fish provide some light.

The creature has no problem with sea monsters because they are so small, except for the inky giant squid. Left-behind edible scraps filter down and look like snow.

Ruke asks his air-breathing friend above to share his knowledge of “up there.” Some of the questions that Ruke poses are strange.

Do they make songs with pipes and strings? Do you know about telegraph machines? Ruke says he found one on the wrecked ship and has learned to send out messages by Morse Code.

He has no idea what Christmas is, but the box he receives for Christmas implodes when he opens it.

Ruke’s idea is to use the umbrella to protect himself from an octopus.

The fishbowl he received is not very useful since the fish kept floating out of it.

He worked hard to build an ultra marine. He trained and toughened up for a trip to explore the shore where he found many wonderful things.

Rebecca Stelly’s vivid imagination leads her to visualize the bottom of the sea.

A pictorial glossary provides factual information for the marine biologist to learn, and suggested activities make the book ideal for the science classroom.

The illustrations use brilliant colors on dark background to emphasize the floating graceful movements of the underwater scenes.

Stelly’s aim is to entice children to reach a little farther than they think they can.

Margaret Barno lives in Tyler. She is an avid reader, creative short story writer, mentor and enjoys crossword and jigsaw puzzles.

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