Purdue University North Central Chancellor Dr. James B. Dworkin has published the children’s book, “The Dog and The Dolphin,” the delightful story of two unlikely friends who meet on a beach in Florida.
The children’s story was inspired by an interaction Dworkin observed several years ago while vacationing with his family on Sanibel Island, Fla. During a visit to the beach, Dworkin watched a dog, depicted in the book as an Irish setter named Red, wander the beach. The dog strolled around, sniffed here and there and seemed to be bored, said Dworkin. But as the dog gazed into the water, it caught a glimpse of something that interested him. A dolphin was frolicking a short distance away.
The dog was clearly interested in the dolphin. Dworkin observed that it seemed like the dolphin noticed the dog on the beach. The dolphin seems so interested in the dog that it would swim in the same direction that the dog ran. When the dog ran to the left, the dolphin followed. Then the dog ran to the right, the dolphin would change direction too. The dog seemed to be so enamored with his new friend, he tried to swim out to it with a Frisbee so they could play together.
Dworkin found the interaction to be so charming, he wrote down what he’d observed and did a few rough drawings, thinking that it was a heartwarming story to relate. He asked an esteemed portrait artist, Michael Chelich, of Munster, to illustrate the story. As a first-time book illustrator, Chelich created amazingly detailed, life-like art work to help to tell the story of what took place on the beach that sunny day.
As a parent and grandparent Dworkin knows the importance of reading with children and sparking their active imaginations. This story of an unusual friendship between a dog and a dolphin not only captures the interest of youngsters, but also teaches valuable lessons of friendship and diversity as the story’s two characters form an unlikely, yet unmistakable bond.
The book also serves as a lasting legacy to Dworkin’s grandchildren as three of their names are featured in the illustrations. A likeness of Chelich’s daughter is seen as a young swimmer.
Dworkin intends for the book to have another lasting effect as he will donate part of the proceeds to endow a scholarship for students in the PNC Early Childhood Education program.
An accomplished author, Dworkin has written the books, “Owners Versus Players: Baseball and Collective Bargaining” (Boston: Auburn House Publishing Company, 1981), and “Reflections on the Transformation in Industrial Relations” (Scarecrow Press, 1989). He has also written and edited numerous articles and chapters for a variety of professional publications.
“The Dog and the Dolphin” is his first children’s book. He already has an inspiration for his second children’s book.
In the coming months, Dworkin and Chelich look forward to sharing the book with children, their parents and grandparents at readings and book signings. One of his first stops will be to read the book to the kindergarten class of his grandson Jimmy.
Information on readings and book signings will be available at www.thedogandthedolphin.com.