Kensuke’s Kingdom, by Michael Morpurgo

A boy on a sailing voyage around the world with his parents and his dog, Stella, when his dog Stella goes overboard one night, washed off the deck with a large wave. Before he knows it, he has been swept overboard as well.

He wakes up on an island, alone with the monkeys, orangutans, and mosquitoes. Without food and water, surviving chances are slim. He spends the day very hungry and thirsty and bug-bitten.

The next day, someone, or something, has left him and his dog food and water. The boy learns that he shares the island with an old man, and if he wants to survive, he will have to play by this strange man’s rules…..


This book was very very sweet. Well written, it was a bit like My Side of the Mountain, but I liked that the boy wasn’t alone. It was detailed about how they lived, but knowing to eat fruits and fish on an island is not exactly rocket science. Without the lengthy descriptions as in My Side of the Mountain, it is easier for younger kids to enjoy as well.

My mom and I both cried at the ending. I loved how it ended; with My Side of the Mountain, it was sort of an ideal situation, but this one was very different from that ending.

Overall Rating: 4/5

Violence: 3/10

Language: 0/10

Inappropriateness/Romance: 0/10

Audience: Ages 7 and up


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