Study Guide

The View from Saturday Nadia Tells of Turtle Love

By E. L. Konigsburg

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Nadia Tells of Turtle Love

  • Once again, we're in the first person. This time, though, we're inside Nadia's brain.
  • Nadia talks about her grandfather, who just got married to Margaret Draper.
  • Wait a second—that means Noah was at her grandfather's wedding, and she wasn't. Hmmm.
  • Nadia's parents just got divorced, and she and her mother had to go from their comfortable home in Florida to the strange new place of Epiphany, New York. It's a huge change for Nadia.
  • The August before, Nadia and her dog Ginger (who is a genius) went to Florida to visit her father as part of the whole custody thing.
  • And it's time for another flashback. Here's how it goes down:
  • The visit is tough on Nadia because her dad is acting extra-worried all the time. He's either super-anxious and just standing around, or he's not paying attention to her.
  • They hang out with her Grandpa Izzy and Margaret, but things are awkward between Nadia and her father. Frankly, her father is just plain awkward all the time. (What else do you expect from accountants?)
  • At least Izzy and Margaret seem really happy.
  • At Sunday brunch, things are a little gloomy. Nadia knows all about the events of Izzy and Margaret's wedding because she got a full report from Noah. As it turns out, Nadia's mom works for Noah's dad.
  • Nadia feels alone.
  • She gets pushed into hanging out with Margaret's grandson, Ethan, when he arrives to visit. Seems like a drag, but Nadia might be interested in Ethan. Or maybe not. You know the feeling.
  • You'll never guess what happens next. No, seriously. You'll never guess.
  • Ethan and Nadia go to work on turtle nests.
  • Yep.
  • It turns out Izzy and Margaret met because of turtles. Margaret volunteers as a turtle rescuer—she visits turtle nests and make sure they hatch. Izzy started going on the walks, too, and fell in love with both the turtles and Margaret.
  • Awww.
  • Nadia actually knows quite a bit about turtles. With her grandpa's encouragement, she wrote an entire school report on them. We like this, because it means she shares her knowledge with us.
  • After an afternoon at the pool, a whole bunch of people join for the turtle-checking fun.
  • It's not all sunshine and rainbows, though. When they open up one nest, they find out that a lot of the turtle hatchlings have died.
  • One of them is "live-pipped," which means that it's alive but still stuck in its shell. Margaret takes it home to help it prepare for life in the wild.
  • This bummer summer sure is looking up. The five turtle-hunters (Izzy, Margaret, Nadia, Nadia's dad, and Ethan) get into a cozy routine of early-morning turtle walks.
  • The highlight of the summer is a trip to see a touring company perform Phantom of the Opera, which totally blows Ethan's mind.
  • Nadia's dad even decides that he wants to get "permitted." That's like getting your driver's license, but for handling turtles. (It's super-illegal to disturb a turtle's nest if you're not permitted.)
  • Great, right? Super turtle-team to the rescue!
  • Not so fast. It's about this time that Nadia starts feeling left out. All anyone wants to do is rescue stupid turtles, and it doesn't occur to them to, you know, see how she's doing about the divorce or the long FL-NY commute.
  • And then Nadia and Ethan get into it when Nadia realizes that Ethan already knows her mom, because her mom happens to be a dental hygienist who's now working for—get ready—Noah's dad. And Margaret—Ethan's grandmother—actually helped Nadia's mom get the job, because guess where Margaret is from?
  • Yep. Epiphany, New York.
  • Okay, okay. Besides being a set of freaky coincidences, what's the big deal?
  • Well, Nadia is fed up with being pushed around. Her parents are divorced, she's got this dumb custody arrangement, and to top it off this new kid—who her dad is totally bonding with—he already knows all about her. Not too cool.
  • Nadia sulks, and then sulks some more, until finally her dad decides to take her to Disney World as a peace offering.
  • They're about to head out when her grandfather sends out a Turtle Emergency signal: A big storm is on the way, and he needs their help moving all the wee little hatchlings to safety.
  • At first Nadia is like, no way. Storm or no storm, I'm going to Disney World.
  • Then she has a flash of inspiration. You know, like an epiphany? They've got to help the turtles get settled, just like Margaret helped her mom move and settle after the divorce.
  • Just like that, Nadia's heart grows three sizes.

The View from Saturday Nadia Tells of Turtle Love Study Group

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