THE BALLOONS BLOW BOOK

AN UPLIFTING EDUCATIONAL JOURNEY FOR THE YOUNG & YOUNG AT HEART

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A book creating change

This is the first in a fresh new series of MicroActivist books aimed squarely at educating and inspiring children to fall in love with our oceans and add their voice in the rapidly rising chorus to protect it.

Each book is an episode in a series that casts light on many of the core issues plaguing our ocean and its community. Each book not only enlightens its young readers on an important ocean issue, it's also a call to action to do something about it, complete with an action plan at the conclusion of every book.    

 

Story Overview

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With his pigeon pal Lucky at his side, and his trusty whale under his legs, Connor leads his all animal ocean crew of do-gooders on an all out quest to chase down and recover a large mass of balloons, heedlessly released by a shortsighted group of wedding goers. Joined early in the adventure by a pod of helpful spinner dolphins, Connor and his companions encounter and rescue a diverse array of irresistibly charming ocean creatures lucky enough to have run-ins with the deadly balloons. The story ends on a happy note with a newly formed team of ocean defenders united in their oath to defend against all things that threaten harm against the ocean.

This call to action echoes out to the young reader, encouraging them to answer the call to protect our ocean and all it's wondrous creatures within.

 

Characters

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Meet Connor

Connor is the peter pan of the ocean. The ever ADVENTUROUS ocean Defender every kid longs to become. A purely innocent soul With an indescribably deep love for all ocean life. connor's world exists within the perpetual frontlines between the topside world and his world below.

Both a BEFRIENDING passionate ambassador, and a competent warrior for his ocean companions, connor never backs down when he senses his friends are under threat, matching wits with and often turning  all who seek harm to the ocean into new allies.  

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meet mazi

Mazi's my wildcard, and when she feels like helping, she's unstoppable. To date there's nothing she can't do... except maybe read. I've still got that one over her, though sometimes I swear she already has that one down too!

Taking it beyond the book

Though Connors reality within these books is fictional, the issues addressed within each book are very real, as are many of the inventions and methods Connor employs in his struggles to protect the ocean. Much to the glee of Connorss young following, most of Connors gadgets are based on real world counterparts the team uses during their critter rescue and reporting excursions.  This creates a fantastic opportunity for the young reader to continue their learning about ocean conservation by following the current projects of Connor and the MicroActivist Team.

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Connors Self Propelled Sub-wing

The self propelled subwing (always on the side of his trusty whale) performs a variety of functions including camera stabilizer, carry-all, and rapid underwater transport vehicle.

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Shallow Water Scuba Dive System

The shallow underwater scuba dive system (the illustrated version of Connor's
scuba rig is similar to his real world rig show here but is an ultra-modernized minimalist version that includes a small back tank
and ultra high-tech open face diving helmet that keeps our young heroes face and his endearing expressions entirely visible to the reader.

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Leg Mounted Telescopic Utility Spear

This spear telescopically extends within milliseconds from the center out in both directions to become fully extended as shown. Connor uses it to stab balloons and trash, but its interchangeable tips make it quite handy for lots of rescue missions.

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Meet Lucky the Pigeon

Connor Rescued this pigeon who was ensnared in a bundle of balloons. He's trained Lucky to pop airborne balloons.  
Lucky's over-anxious desire to greet Connor ocassionally becomes a detriment, like when Connor surfaces and the bird immediatly perches on and plugs up his snorkel inhale tube before the boy can breathe. Out of survival, Connor has learned to spew a plume of water through his snorkel just as he surfaces in an attempt to hold off his overentheusiastic lovesick flyer. 

'Lucky' Points of Interest

  • Kind of a Non-Verbal kooing version of Mr. Magoo... Clumsy beyond belief yet kept safe due almost entirely to his ongoing good luck streak.
  • Hates getting wet so takes to the air any time Connor takes to the water. He's a rescued homing pigeon though so has the uncanny ability to track Connor wherever he is underwater, immediately dive bombing his favorite human the moment he surfaces. 
  • Team members boating on the surface often rely on the bird as a means to track Connors position when he's underwater
  • Connor lives with the real-life Lucky who was rescued entangled in balloon string and became the inspiration for this book.
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Meet KaKow the Whale

This is the name the whale gave himself (unsubstantiated rumors suggest the whale chose this name as it's the sound made when he rams whaling ships)

Quick to action and devoid of fear, this whale is both Connors ride and muscle

 

Our talented illustrator

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After searching high and low, Simona’s character designs were simply unmatched
— Shawn Berryhill (Connor's Dad)

When we set out to create the ultimate children's book series, we knew excellent character design and deeply rich and lively scenes were critical to capturing these kids and drawing them into Connor's world. As such, a great illustrator simply wasn't enough. We needed an artist who really stood out from the pack, who's artwork reached off the page and grabbed our young readers by their hearts and creative minds.

After searching high and low, Simona's character designs were simply unmatched. Simona isn't one of the best character illustrators we uncovered through extensive searching, she is without a doubt the absolute best character illustrator we could possibly find.  

Much to our astonishment, when we reached out to her, Simona Ceccarelli was not only receptive to the job, but she was thoroughly impressed by Connor's environmental work. Being a fellow ocean lover and diver, she offered to create the book cover free of charge to help this project along. Simona is the perfect fit to illustrate this book and its series and we're on cloud 9 to have her aboard. The chemistry between Simona simply clicks, and we're already working together like age old partners in design!  

In addition to being the worlds best character illustrator, Simona is also a devoted mom, seasoned scientist, and world traveler.