Children's Literature (Pamela Turner)
This volume from the ‘Naturebook’ series presents facts about sharks for young readers. Each short chapter (1 to 2 pages of text) has a simple, conversational title—Meet the Shark!, What Do Sharks Look Like?, Are There Different Kinds of Sharks? Other chapters discuss whether sharks are dangerous, how sharks hunt, baby sharks, the ecological role of sharks, human threats to sharks and shark research. Each two-page spread has one page of text accompanied by a full-page, colorful photograph. The wide margins and double-spaced, large print give the book a clean, simple format. The easy-to-use layout and bright color photographs will appeal to children writing their first animal report. Overall, the text is clear and informative. The author appropriately plays down the danger of shark attacks, while emphasizing how dangerous humans are to sharks through overfishing. However, the description of sharks could be improved. The text describes sharks as members of the fish family, but fails to point out the most important difference between sharks and most other fish (their cartilaginous skeleton). The volume includes a table of contents, a glossary of terms (printed in bold in the text), an index, and a list of web sites for more information.
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