Twelve-year-old Chantal Dupray and her father are living in Paris during its occupation by the Germans during WWII. Going to the Seine each evening to catch fish for supper, she is amazed one night to see a small whale that has gotten lost and is now stranded in the river. As the people of Paris find it increasingly difficult to find food, the whale, which Chantal has named Franklin in honor of the American president the French hope will send troops to rescue them, is in danger of being caught and eaten. The German soldiers believe Franklin is a sign of good luck for their war efforts and put up a net across the mouth of the river to keep him from escaping until they can catch him as a gift for Adolf Hitler. When Chantal’s dad and aunt are arrested for being part of the Resistance movement and taken to a prison away from Paris, she is determined to find a way to get to them and to get Franklin to safety. An imaginative tale blending history, hope, and heroism.