It’s day two of The Shark Dog Winter Blog Tour. For us, it’s a real treat to be involved, because Ged Adamson’s books are well-loved in our household, from our very first read of Douglas, You Need Glasses! Like the adorable dog Douglas, Shark Dog is full of energy and positivity.
The story begins with an adventure. A young girl joins her explorer father on an expedition. They discover beautiful butterflies, strange plants, colourful birds and tortoises as big as cars, but it’s Shark Dog that finds them. There’s a THUMP! in the night and a slobbery SLURP! The young girl and Shark Dog become instant friends—family. The events that follow spurred laughter, plenty of it. Sometime Shark Dog acts like a dog and others time like a shark. Always, his spirit is infectious. “Either way, Shark Dog was a fun friend to have around. On land. And underwater.” Just keep an eye on him at the beach, or you’ll have people screaming… SHARK! Lol! This moment is hilarious!
Shark Dog! by Ged Adamson
Shark Dog! illustration
We love a good laugh, but we also enjoy stories that show us a range of emotion. Shark Dog is a happy pup (I just realised that this works both ways—baby dog and baby shark) who can also feel sad. Shark Dog misses his friends from home. The young girl and her father discern his needs and another adventure begins, an adventure with rides and songs, good-byes and a choice, one enormous leap and a joyful cuddle.
Adamson’s illustrations are colourful and lively, as vibrant as Shark Dog’s character. Read Shark Dog aloud with kids, a group of kids. Get them calling out those onomatopoeias—THUMP! SLURP! SPLOOSH! They’ll delight in light-hearted chaos and Shark Dog’s efforts trying to join in with the fun, even more so when they find out that the adventure continues with Shark Dog and the School Trip Rescue! available June 2018. Save the date!
Shark Dog and the School Trip Rescue! by Ged Adamson
Shark Dog and the School Trip Rescue! illustration
“Shark Dog is going on a class trip to explore the great outdoors! But when he stumbles upon an animal in trouble, it’s up to Shark Dog, with the class’s help, to save the day.” We are excited already imagining what Shark Dog gets up to in this new environment with new friends. From what we know about him, there’s sure to be some funny moments and examples of his cheerful courage. Shark Dog is a “one-of-a-kind pet.”
Another sweet story by Adamson that features a young girl and her unique animal friend is, I Want to Grow. I feel for Herb, the little green dinosaur, as all my life I’ve watched people grow taller while I stayed tiny, and I’m sure other kids will relate too. It seems that mine are in a rush to get bigger and grow up. Thankfully they haven’t asked me to plant them in the garden or try and stretch them taller like Herb does.
I Want to Grow, by Ged Adamson
I Want to Grow illustration
My favourite line is this… “Herb didn’t worry about catching up with Muriel because he was growing!” This is important to note because I feel that our kids are constantly faced with competition. Who’s faster than who? Who’s taller? Smarter? Life isn’t a competition, it’s a journey, and we’re all travelling at our own pace.
My girl doesn’t need glasses, but she wanted some after reading this book. I’m guessing it’d be quite successful with children who do require glasses, yet who might be hesitant about getting them.
Douglas, You Need Glasses! is about a girl and her dog, her near-sighted dog who mistakes leaves for squirrels, squirrels for dinosaurs, and a wasp’s nest for a ball—Eeeek! Nancy takes Douglas to see an optician. His sight is tested and glasses are chosen, after nearly every pair is tried on and tried out. On their way home, Douglas remarks, “Wow! Everything looks amazing.” This book is amazing. A new favourite.
Douglas, You Need Glasses! by Ged Adamson
Douglas, You Need Glasses! illustration
Colours are bright. Both the story and illustrations are hilarious. A laugh a second. Pace and continuity are perfect. I especially love the flashback black and white photo and the double page spread where we get to see things through Douglas’ new glasses—colour blur juxtaposed with clear images of the park, people, a squirrel, and a leaf. It even gets better. Back matter shares images of “Real Kids Who Wear Glasses!” and a hashtag #douglasyouneedglasses so children, with help from their parents, can share their own pics on social media.
Fun fact: Adamson remembers the moment he realised he needed glasses. Check out the little story on the back flap of the dust jacket.
Coming Feb 2018 is Ava and the Rainbow (Who Stayed), written and illustrated by Ged Adamson.
“The rain had stopped and the sun was coming out. And Ava knew that meant one thing…A RAINBOW! And not just any rainbow—this was the most beautiful rainbow Ava had ever seen. She wished that it could stay up in the bright sky forever. When the rainbow was still there the next day, and the next day, Ava realized it was true—the rainbow had decided to stay! Everyone loved the rainbow as much as Ava. And she was happy.
But when people start to lose interest in the rainbow, Ava learns that sometimes the rare and special things in life are the most valuable and precious of all.”
Ava and the Rainbow (Who Stayed), by Ged Adamson
Ava and the Rainbow (Who Stayed) illustration