Legends of Eerie-on-Sea

As previously mentioned, the reading theme for this summer is “Oceans of Possibilities.” I recently completed The Witch of Blackbird Pond and intended to start The Black Stallion next but I got distracted by a reading suggestion: Malamander by Thomas Taylor (Lexile score 710). Bursting with laugh out loud awkward moments and quirky characters, this middle school appropriate read was a delight. I even read late into the night under my covers to hide the light from my phone. This book is definitely on my next read aloud list for my daughter.

When sea mist drifts up the streets like vast ghostly tentacles, and saltwater spray rattles the windows…

Malamander

I was so enthralled I simply had to read book two, Gargantis, which is full of sea-faring fishermen and sea shanties too. As a result, my brain has been flooded with sea shanty tunes so much so that I penned a play on Drunken Sailor about my Boston Terrier.

What do ya do with a lazy Boston
What do ya do with a lazy Boston
What do ya do with a lazy Boston
Not so early in the morning?

Wrap him in a blankie ’til he wakes up
Wrap him in a blankie ’til he wakes up
Wrap him in a blankie ’til he wakes up
Not so early in the morning.

Shanties, Chanties, or Chanteys?

All spellings are correct! A sea shanty is a working tune sung to keep rhythm. However, tunes sung while off duty were called foc’sle songs. Here are a few of my favorite shanties:

Pay Me My Money Down
Roll the Old Chariot Along
Drunken Sailor

Further Reading

A Deep Dive Into Sea Shanties” by Stephen Winick. January 29, 2021

Thomas Taylor Dives Into Seaside Intrigue in ‘Malamander’” by Sally Lodge. August 08, 2019

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