By Ann Downer; illustrated by Shennen Bersani
32 pages; ages 4-8
Sylvan Dell, 2013
Shark Baby lives in a works of “stripes and shadows, where seahorses played,” writes Ann Downer. He’s impatient to get out of his egg case and see the wide blue ocean. Then, even before he hatches, a storm snaps the egg case free of its attachment to kelp, The current bounces him off rough coral and drags him along the bottom of the sea. All that tumbling rips a hole in the egg case and Shark Baby can see spots.
“What are you?” asks Shark Baby. The spotted shark answers that he’s a horn shark. “Maybe I’m a horn shark, too, says Shark Baby.
But horn sharks have spiral egg cases, and Shark Baby’s is a flat “mermaid’s purse”. When he sees a striped pajama shark he thinks he might belong to that sort of family. Then he’s advised by a wise octopus to seek the mermaid; she will have the answers. Shark Baby meets other sea creatures and eventually makes it home where he hatches and learns what kind of shark he is.
Though the story is fanciful, it’s backed up with four pages of shark information, fun facts, and a comparison of different kinds of shark egg cases.
This is part of the STEM Friday round-up. Check out the other science books and resources reviewed this week. Review copy provided by publisher.