Island of the Blue Dolphins
How we cite our quotes:
"The Aleuts come from a country far to the north, he said. "Their ways are not ours nor is their language. They have come to take otter and to give us our share in many goods which they have and which we can use. In this way shall we profit. But we shall not profit if we try to befriend them. They are people who do not understand friendship." (2.7)
Why doesn't Chief Chowig want to be friends with the Aleuts? Why don't the Aleuts understand friendship?
Many of our tribe went to the cliff each night to count the number killed during the day. They counted the dead otter and thought of the beads and other things that each pelt meant. But I never went to the cove and whenever I saw the hunters with their long spears skimming over the water, I was angry, for these animals were my friends. It was fun to see them playing or sunning themselves among the kelp. It was more fun than the thought of beads to wear around my neck. (3.5)
Karana values the friendship of the otter more than the beads that their pelts can be traded for. This is how she is different from both the Aleuts and most of her tribe.
Dolphins are animals of good omen. It made me happy to have them swimming around the canoe, and though my hands had begun to bleed from the chafing of the paddle, just watching them made me forget the pain. I was very lonely before they appeared, but now I felt that I had friends with me and did not feel the same. (10.35)
Dolphins, too, are special animals for Karana. They're her friends. (Shoot, why don't we have dolphin friends?) The island is also in the shape of a dolphin. Why might that be?