Sea Pup

Our rating: ***½

Clint Barlow goes on a sailing expedition one day and finds an orphaned harbor seal. Unwilling to just leave the animal and interested in all things having to do with the ocean, Clint takes the seal home and gains permission to keep it until it makes trouble. The seal, Buster, becomes a good friend to Clint, but soon becomes a nuisance when he steals milk from cows, “helps” fishermen with their catches, and scares a family who have never seen a seal, much less a tame one. Clint also finds that Buster is always in danger because almost everybody in the area considers seals as pests to be shot on sight. The Barlows try sending Buster to Alaska, only to have the seal return. Clint is torn between keeping his friend forever and finding a place where Buster will be safe from harm.

Sea Pup presents a fairly good take on the “adopt an orphaned wild animal” theme. There are times when Clint seems to act young for his age and, with his interest in science, there are some references to the evolutionary origin of seals. Thankfully, these do not dominate the story. The ending could have used some work, but on the whole the story is an enjoyable light read.