Multicultural Children's Book Day Book Review: The Secret Sea Horse (Mermaid Tales)

Title: Mermaid Tales: The Secret Sea Horse (Mermaid Tales)
Author: Debbie Dadey
Illustrator: Tatevik Avakyan
Publisher: Scholastic
Year: 2013
Ages: 6 - 9
IBSN: 978-1442482609

The Secret Sea Horse by Debbie Dadey is the sixth installment of the book series Mermaid Tales. Echo is a little mermaid who goes to third grade with her friends—Shelly, Kiki, Rocky, and Pearl—at the Trident Academy. Mrs. Karp announces a spelling test, "the worst thing ever" since spelling is not Echo's favorite subject. The spelling test is about ocean creatures and includes the word "sea horse." Echo loves sea horses and dreams about having one. To her surprise and that of her friends, they discover that Rocky has a sea horse as a pet. 

Echo has a conflicted reaction about whether having a sea horse as a pet is right or wrong. She can't stop thinking about it, which means she forgets to study for the spelling test. She asks everyone, including Mrs. Karp, whether it is right or wrong. A debate about the right answer ensues at the classroom. Mrs. Karp invites a special guest to answer the students all about this dilemma. At the end, Echo learns that keeping a sea horse, or any other sea creature, as a pet depends on the situation.

My Thoughts on The Secret Sea Horse (Mermaid Tales)

The Secret Sea Horse (Mermaid Tales) is an excellent book to subtly introduce children to the reality of taking care of the world's animals. In this case, they learn about sea horses and maritime life without noticing they are learning about them. With 162 children's books published, Debbie Dadey has mastered the ability of teaching children about important subjects while they enjoy fun and relatable stories. 

The story raises important questions. Is it okay to keep wild animals as pets? Does it depend on the situation? Are some animals better off in captivity or free? Are some animals endangered? Is it important to take good care of our animals? Is it important to do research before reaching a conclusion?

Rating: 4 stars


After reading The Secret Sea Horse (Mermaid Tales) by Debbie Dadey, we looked for kid-friendly facts about sea horses. We found a really cool video on You Tube: Facts about Seahorse by Science With Kids.

I reviewed The Secret Sea Horse (Mermaid Tales) by Debbie Dadey for Multicultural Children's Book Day 2017. 

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017 (1/27/17) is its fourth year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness on the ongoing need to include kid’s books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators. 

Despite census data that shows 37% of the US population consists of people of color, only 10% of children’s books published have diversity content. Using the Multicultural Children’s Book Day holiday, the MCBD Team are on a mission to change all of that.

Current Sponsors:  MCBD 2017 is honored to have some amazing Sponsors on board. Platinum Sponsors include Scholastic, Barefoot Books and Broccoli. Other Medallion Level Sponsors include heavy-hitters like Author Carole P. Roman, Audrey Press, Candlewick Press,  Fathers Incorporated, KidLitTV, Capstone Young Readers, ChildsPlayUsa, Author Gayle Swift, Wisdom Tales Press, Lee& Low Books, The Pack-n-Go Girls, Live Oak Media, Author Charlotte Riggle, Chronicle Books and Pomelo Books

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also work tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.
MCBD Links to remember:
MCBD site:
Free Multicultural Books for Teachers:
Free Kindness Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators:
Free Diversity Book Lists and Activities for Teachers and Parents:
Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with is on social media and be sure and look for/use their official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.



  1. Thank you for your reviews.....These stories are a must read for children....I love the diversity content and I am so happy as an Early Childhood Professional that children will have more access to diverse stories...thank you!

  2. Debbie Dadie has the sweetes booksMy daughter loved them :) #readyourworld (becky)


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