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Island of the Blue Dolphins

Scott O'Dell

Chapters 22–23

Chapters 20–21

Chapters 24–25

Summary

Karana does not take the necklace from the rock; instead, she waits in the bushes nearby. Finally, Tutok appears and, seeing the necklace still on the rock, stands confused for a minute, then turns to leave. Karana runs quickly down the ravine and calls out to Tutok. Tutok returns, and Karana complements the beauty of the necklace. The two find the difference in their respective peoples' words for "beautiful" amusing (for Karana, it is "Win-tai," for Tutok, it is "Wintscha"), and they spend the rest of the afternoon trading words for various things. As Tutok turns to leave, she asks Karana's name; Karana tells her "Won-a-pa-lei."

Tutok comes day after day, and soon the time approaches for her to leave the island. At this point, Karana reveals her secret name. Karana makes a circlet of shells for Tutok, who is grateful to receive such a beautiful gift. The next day, Tutok does not return, and Karana goes to the Harbor to see if the Aleut ship is still there. She finds the Aleuts loading their catch for the voyage home. Tutok does not come that night. The next day, Karana goes back to look for the ship. When she sees it is gone, she feels a momentary rush of joy, for she can again freely roam her island. Then, as she listens to the sound of the island, she thinks to herself that, without Tutok, the island seems very quiet.

The hunters leave many wounded otters in their wake. Most die and float to shore, and Karana kills some of the ones that are hurt too badly to live. She finds a young otter that is not badly hurt, and brings him to a tide pool that is safe from the waves. She feeds him with fish and he grows large and begins to heal. Karana names the otter Mon-a-nee, which means "Little Boy with Large Eyes." Mon-a-nee is difficult to keep fed, however, and after three days that Karana cannot feed him because the sea is too rough to fish, she returns to the tide pool to find that he has gone back to the ocean. Karana feels happy that Mon-a-nee is back in the sea, bit sad that she will not recognize him if she sees him, because otters all look alike.

Karana moves back to her house on the headland now that the Aleuts are gone. The baskets she had stored there are gone, so she cannot live off of her food stores. However, though it was hard for her to provide for herself, Rontu, and Mon-a-nee, feeding only herself and Rontu is not difficult. Karana makes a pair of earrings to go with her necklace, and on sunny days she wears these with her cormorant dress and walks with Rontu by the cliffs. She misses Tutok, however, and imagines conversations with her.

Analysis

By establishin a relationship with Tutok, Karana learns the importance of trusting others. She also learns how much she needs the company of other people. Karana is naturally mistrustful of the Aleuts and of Tutok by extension. Even when Karana starts spending some time with Tutok, she does not trust her. When Tutok asks Karana's name, Karana tells her "Won-a-pa-lei" instead of her secret name. In Karana's mind, her father, Chowig, died because he revealed his secret name to Captain Orlov. Thus, even though Karana is no longer openly afraid of Tutok, she is still wary. When Karana finally reveals her secret name to Tutok, it is a marker of trust and an acceptance of friendship. The meaning is only significant to Karana, however, because Tutok does not know about secret names. When it comes time for Tutok to leave, Karna is at first happy, because the Aleuts are gone. As she looks out over her island, however, she begins to miss Tutok. This is an important scene, for is very much like a scene earlier in the novel. In chapter eleven, when Karana returns from her long voyage on the sea, she looked out over her island and feels happy. After Tutok leaves, she looks out onto the same view and feels lonely. The island seems quiet without Tutok. Instead of talking to Rontu, Karana now imagines conversations with Tutok. What Karana misses most about Tutokk is having someone to talk with, as her stress on sound being the thing she misses most about Tutok implies. She can talk to Rontu, but Rontu will never respond; it is only a little better than talking to a tree. Though having animals as friends does alleviate some of Karana's loneliness, Tutok reminds her how wonderful it is to have someone to talk with.

Karana gets a new pet in this section, the otter Mon-a-nee. However, Karana does not force Mon-a-nee to stay with her, and is happy when she sees he has returned. Karana is beginning to respect the animals as she would people. Her changing view of these animals is revealed in the way she describes them. For example, when one day Karana cannot catch enough fish to feed Mon-a-nee, she says that he looks at her "reproachfully." She personifies Mon-a-nee, ascribing to him human characteristics. Correspondingly, she starts to treat Mon-a-nee and other animals as she would humans (though she has almost always treated Rontu in such a way).

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island of the blue dolphin

by adambob12, February 15, 2013

i love the book it is awesome I'm on chapter 16 it is the besy book better

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13 out of 24 people found this helpful

May need to know..

by HCW10, January 02, 2014

There are some other important notes my Language Art teacher thinks we should know...There was good fortune when the fish washed up on shore to feed them and when Wana-a-pa-le got upset about them killing the otters...this might help a little but otherwise it explains a lot already.

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4 out of 4 people found this helpful

Island of the Blue Dolphins

by note3, February 20, 2014

i hate this our teacher just assigned us this omg i hate this

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3 out of 11 people found this helpful

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