The shark has been lurking in the deep, dark sea, searching for a fishy snack. He’s big and he’s mean and he’s always hungry. Tired of fleeing the shark, the other seas creatures come up with a plan. If they all work together it might be possible to teach the shark a lesson he’ll never forget. With a lively rhyming text; bright, expressive illustrations; and a playful die-cut cover, this is one shark’s tale that will be a hit either at story hour . . . or feeding time.
This is a cute and clever book with a solid story and nice message. The illustrations of ocean animals are darling and really pull you into the book. The story is simple enough to engage young readers well, and the rhyming text is fun to read! The message about working together toward a common goal would work well for a preschool or elementary school class.
My dad was an army bandmaster and director of music. Having a dad in the army meant that we moved around a fair bit when I was a child, so I lived in Germany, Singapore and Hong Kong as well as places in England, including in Devon where I live now. I recently worked out that I went to ten different schools, or eleven if you count going to the same school twice (that was in Hong Kong). Imagine having that ‘first day at school’ feeling eleven times! But often there were other children whose parents were in the services too and who had also changed schools a lot, so I didn’t feel too weird.
I have always enjoyed words but it took me quite a while to discover that I wanted to be a children’s writer. After university I worked for a short time as a journalist and then for a much longer time editing and sometimes writing books for grown ups. But I always liked writing funny stories and verses. When I was best man at my brother John’s wedding I even wrote my best man’s speech in rhyme.
A few years later, my wife read that speech and said I should do more of that kind of thing. After we had our first child, Theo, and then (in 2001) moved from London to Devon, I started taking children’s writing seriously. I joined a creative writing group and in 2004 took a course run by the excellent Arvon Foundation. In 2005 I sent the text of A Lark in the Ark to fourteen publishers. Twelve of them said no thanks, but Egmont accepted it. I still have a copy of their cheque on my wall. (Bio via peterbently.com)
Ben Cort is the illustrator of several children’s books, including Aliens Love Underpants and Octopus’s Garden, which have been published in eighteen languages in twenty countries worldwide. Ben lives in Bedfordshire, England. (Bio via http://www.simonandschuster.com/authors/Ben-Cort/62685541)