What kind of parents would name their child Dillon Dillon?
For his tenth birthday, Dillon's parents give him a red rowboat with his name painted on the stern: Dillon Dillon. Why did his parents give him a name like that? To Dillon, it seems like the right time to find out. The truth alters everything Dillon has ever known or felt about himself and his family. But with the rowboat Dillon finds a new freedom as he embarks on a journey that takes him back to his beginnings. His discovery of an island and his memorable encounters with a pair of nesting loons bring him face-to-face with the magic and wonder of life. And though he cannot decipher all its mysteries, Dillon acquires, through these legendary birds, an understanding and acceptance of the world and his place in it.
In a powerful story full of questions, Kate Banks creates a character full of hope and courage. He lets us know what he is thinking - and it's this inner dialogue that we respond to, his constant bewilderment at the way things are that makes us love Dillon Dillon, from his crazy name to his tenacious spirit.
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Kate Banks is the author of Walk Softly, Rachel, Friends of the Heart / Amici del Cuore, and Lenny's Space. She is also the author of many award-winning picture books, among them Max's Words, And If the Moon Could Talk, winner of the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, and The Night Worker, winner of the Charlotte Zolotow Award. She grew up in Maine, where she and her two sisters and brother spent a lot of time outdoors, and where Banks developed an early love of reading. Banks attended Wellesley College and received her masters in history at Columbia University. She lived in Rome for eight years but now lives in the South of France with her husband and two sons, Peter Anton and Maximilian.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
From Dillon Dillon:
At last Dillon stepped onto the island and tied the boat to a tree. He wandered to the spot where his father had buried the three coins, and knelt down. He began to dig. If he kept at it long enough, he was sure he would find the three silver dollars. Dillon dug for what seemed like forever, turning back layers of earth and layers of feeling. He felt happiness, then sadness, fear, and courage all mingled together in the tiers of dirt. Still, there were no coins, and what finally settled around Dillon was loneliness. It was a strange feeling. But it did not last long. Dillon was not alone.
The loon had returned and was nearing the edge of the island, preening its black-and-white feathers. It seemed not to notice Dillon. But as Dillon watched it, an odd feeling overcame him. A sound moved through his body and traveled to his mouth. It popped out like a small shriek, startling the bird. The loon looked up at Dillon. Straight into his eyes. Dillon remembered the grasshopper. He remembered his mother. And this time he looked back.
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