The Funny Life of Sharks
James Campbell and Rob Jones
Bloomsbury Children’s Books
Full of gill-slittingly silly stuff unrelated to the particular elasmobranchs of the title as well as plenty of real sharkish information too, this bonkers book is one to dip in and out of – unless that is, you are a total shark addict and then you might go for total immersion.
Or perhaps you’d rather make your own way through using the different options signposted on almost all the spreads. Trying to do that left this reviewer’s brain starting to feel like not-properly-set jelly.
Another consideration is one of how to classify the book: is it non-fiction or fiction. It’s really hard to decide and anyway, does it really matter? It’s hilarious either way and cleverly interactive to boot.
Moreover it includes pretty much everything you would ever need to know about sharks and a whole lot more you definitely wouldn’t;
but you may well end up so befuddled that you’re unable to tell which is which.
Take for instance, that there are three main kinds of shark attack: the hit and run variety (I can’t quite work out who or what might be doing any running however); the bump and bite type during which the decision is made about whether or not you become a shark’s dinner and thirdly, there’s the deadly sneak attack.
Apparently great white sharks catch seals using that method, approaching them at 50kmph.
Of course no self-respecting shark book would omit what is frequently child readers’ favourite topic – poo; so James Campbell has obligingly included a poo spread. Thereon you’ll discover that shark poo is ejected ‘like a liquid bottom burp.
Moreover shark poo is an important part of the ecosystem. Really truly.
To finish, let me just say, this whole inventive compilation – liberally littered with Rob Jones drawings – is cartilageniously crazy and particularly perfect for selachimorphaphiles as well as bibliophobes who need their reads in easily digestible bite-sized chunks.