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Off & Away
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Off & Away

4.3  ·  Rating details ·  233 Ratings  ·  55 Reviews
How would you get mail if you lived in the middle of the sea? It's Jo's dad's job to deliver it, taking bottles wherever they need to go. He always comes home with exciting stories to tell-but Jo is far too afraid to go out on the ocean herself. Until Dad gets a bad sea cold, that is. With no one but Jo to deliver the bottles, she must find her courage and set sail alone. ...more
Hardcover, 44 pages
Published June 5th 2018 by Disney-Hyperion
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Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Jo must help her dad deliver all the message-in-a-bottle bottles to their correct homes when her dad falls ill. She bravely ventures out to all the remote and scary places, even to a place her dad had never visited.

Off & Away is a story full of kid appeal, with bright and deliciously scary-looking monsters, lots of fun adventures, and a main character who overcomes her fears and makes new friends.
Oct 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I follow Cale Atkinson on social media platforms so I knew Off and Away was making it's way into the world and could not wait to grab a copy of my own. We are huge fans of Cale's work because it is always so detailed with so much to see and find. Each reading of one of his fabulous stories reveals something we missed the first few times.

Off and Away, published by Disney-Hyperion is the story of Jo who's dad is a message in a bottle delivery man. When one day he comes down with a severe sea cold,
Jul 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s
Cale Atkinson is a great storyteller and one of my most favorite illustrators. I would enjoy a print of every page of artwork in this book. So colorful and bright, the story is a about a little girl (who is wonderfully brown) who faces her fears and delivers bottles to creatures after her father becomes ill. By the end, she becomes braver than even her father and makes friends along the way. Although it's not my favorite Atkinson book, I enjoyed every bit of this fun story.
Scottsdale Public Library
Jo may think she's no adventurer, yet she actually takes on the biggest adventure of her young life when she sets sail and conquers her own fears. This story is a fantastic way to show kids that it's okay to be afraid but do something anyways...and they might just be surprised by the outcome and themselves. -Jennifer K.
Meredith Spidel
Mar 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is such a sweet, creative picture book for young kiddos, encouraging them to find their inner strength. Love how it taps into the mystery of what DOES happen to those messages in bottles too! Thanks for sending an ARC our way for review, Disney!
Great story about a girl who faces her fears, and finds that monsters are not behind every lurking corner. This would be great for a bedtime book to help little ones face their fears.
Facing fears
Michele Knott
Cale writes books that has kids coming back for readings over and over again. Not only do I love this story, I love finding new details in the illustrations.
Laura Mossa
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Jo always wanted to be a great adventurer like her dad, but her apprehension about what lurked below the sea always kept her from stepping off their dock. When Jo’s dad falls ill and bottles keep piling up, Jo takes a deep breath in before embarking on a courageous journey. On her voyage, Jo soon realizes that appearances can be deceiving and she is in fact, a brave adventurer . Jo’s heroic actions reminded me of
Alex (Briennai)
Jun 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is an adorable tale of a little girl and her father who delivers bottles to the residents of the sea. Jo is scared of what might be out there, but she loves to hear her father tell her stories about it. When her father comes down with a sea cold, Jo sees the bottles starting to pile up. She realizes that it is up to her to get the bottles out to the residents of the sea, and so she has to start off on an adventure of her own.

Let me start off by saying that this is the first picture boo
Christina Carter
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Jo's dad has a pretty awesome job. He works for Off & Away Message in a Bottle Delivery, making sure that every bottle gets to the right home. When he comes down with an awful cold, Jo is left with the mighty big task of filling her dad's shoes. But how will she do it when she is afraid of what awaits her beyond the shore? What will it take to help her rise above her fears?

I always admire the work of those who are both author and illustrator. What a talent Cale Atkinson has to bring his sto
Jun 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
From cover to cover, this was a grand adventure filled with mysterious messages, hidden dangers, and a WHOLE lot of heart! Jo's Dad has a unique job....making sure messages in bottles get to their intended recipients. But what happens when the messenger is sick? Who's going to take over the reigns and get the job done? Jo? Oh no...she's got a massively active imagination and let's face it, you can't exactly see what's below the seas now can you? Right, so there you go...but if not her, than who? ...more
Lee Födi
Jul 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I really love the bright and beautiful illustrations that populate Cale Atkinson's books. Our picture book shelf is full of his books, both the ones he's illustrated for authors, and the ones he has written AND illustrated. Off & Away falls into the latter category, and lives up to Atkinson's previous work. The pictures are sumptuous and details, offering new and hidden details to be discovered in re-readings. I'm a particular fan of the "monster" characters, which are bursting with personal ...more
Jillian Heise
I am in love with this story & adore Jo's bravery in the face of her fears, and what she realizes about those fears in the end. Her determination is inspiring and the details with the juxtaposition of the fantastical sea creatures against the reality adds suspense to her journey and connection for readers. Sometimes we all just need to take a a deep breath and cast off into the unknown. Cale gives readers so much detail to pour over and discover in these illustrations, and the way the light ...more
Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
Off & Away by Cale Atkinson. PICTURE BOOK. Disney Hyperion, 2018. $17. 9781484782323


Jo wants to deliver messages in bottles just like her adventuring dad, but her imaginings of dangers below the surface of the ocean make her freeze instead. Then Dad gets so sick that it will be days, if not weeks before he can deliver the backlog. Can Jo find the courage to take to the ocean?

I am in love with Jo, of course, and with Cale’s expertly crafted book – both words and il
This is a cute picture book with a nice message about overcoming one's fears. The little girl's dad is responsible for delivering all of the messages-in-bottles to the correct recipients. She never accompanies him because she's afraid of all of the creatures and unseen dangers lurking beneath the surface of the ocean. But when her father becomes ill and has to rest, it's up to her to deliver all of the messages. Young readers will enjoy finding out how she gathers up her courage so she won't let ...more
Ingrid Sawubona
Nov 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In Off and Away, Jo faces her fears when her dad gets sick and there is no one to take over his very important job!

Jo’s dad, you see, delivers messages in bottles.

Jo is initially scared of the unknown, but through sheer guts and tenacity, she discovers that the world is not such a scary place after all. And to top it all, she becomes just as great of an adventurer as her dad!

I love the artwork in this picture book. It is majestic and beautifully detailed. The story serves as a good lesson for a
Carol  Vanhook
A great adventure story. Everyone knows those bottles afloat at sea must get to their rightful owners. When Jo's dad gets sick and cannot deliver the bottles that have floated his way, Jo finds the courage to deliver these. With a deep breath, she whispers, again and again, "I can do this", and off she sails. What an adventure! The pictures are frequently double paged - sometimes scary sometimes bright and cheerful. This book will entertain a reader, over and over again!
Sandy Brehl
This story is surrounded by an extravagance of saturated images, word-play, and humor, all of which wrap the core story of FEAR tenderly. It's a delightful treatment of "love is stronger than fear", "things are not always what they seem", "take one step at a time", and other familiar sayings that kids really do need to hear. In this case, the book will draw them back often, allowing important new discoveries each time. This is a great title to add to A MIGHTY GIRL listings.
Jo may think she's no adventurer, yet she actually takes on the biggest adventure of her young life when she sets sail and conquers her own fears. This story is a fantastic way to show kids that it's okay to be afraid, but do something anyways...and they might just be surprised by the outcome and themselves.
Nov 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Story about a little girl who is afraid of something and conquers her fear. She wants to go to sea with her father but fears going but she must take over for her father to deliver bottles to sea creatures to put their messages in. Fantasy, fun, and full of illustrations of sea creatures some real some interesting.
Mary Jo
Nov 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Jo is a character you can’t help but cheer for. Off & Away is an incredible book with stunning illustrations. You feel small and scared when Jo feels small and scared. You feel brave when Jo feels brave. Cale has created a beautiful world to explore. Off & Away is a must have for anyone who has ever felt afraid...which is, this book is for everyone.
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
A high seas adventure about over coming one's fear. Jo's story will make you wish you could climb aboard her boat, and travel the seas with her. This book is an absoutely treasure!

Katie Reilley
Jun 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Cale Atkinson has done it again with a beautifully written & illustrated story about facing your fears through using your inner strength and determination. I rooted for Jo on every gorgeously illustrated page and can’t wait to share this with students for #classroombookaday in the fall.
Jul 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A sweet story about facing your fears and how anxiety and your imagination and make things seem way scarier than they are in reality. I am a huge fan of Cale Atkinson's illustration style. It is so cute and full of lush colors. A gem of a picture book that should be shared widely!
Miss Sarah
Aug 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
This brightly colored and gorgeous book features a young girl who lives on an island with her dad who delivers messages in a bottle for a living. When he becomes ill will she be able to overcome her fear of the sea and help out? preschool and up
Brilliant! Both the illustrations and the story! Facing your fears and finding a way that no one has found before? And doing all on your lonesome...awesome-sauce!
James Bailey
Jun 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I just loved this book. It is a great story about overcoming your fears. The illustrations are bold and colorful. Take the adventure and read this book.
Aug 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Lovely art. Fun story
Jun 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
GREAT book with FANTASTIC illustrations about facing fears. Blown away.
Ms Threlkeld
Jul 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Can’t wait to read this to kids and hear their thoughts on the message.
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Cale Atkinson is an illustrator/writer/animator currently residing in Kelowna Canada.
Believing in tea more than sleep, Cale is constantly working on numerous projects. His work can be found in children’s books, animated shorts, television, and games.

Companies Cale has worked with include Disney Hyperion, Tundra, Owl Books, Grosset & Dunlap, Scholastic, Pearson, and Marvel.
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