Blame it on Jaws. Ever since that blockbuster hit movie theaters back in the summer of 1975, it spooked novice and seasoned swimmers alike and made otherwise confident boaters look over their shoulders a little bit more often. Even 40 years later, the eerie music still freaks me out every now and then while swimming. So it’s no wonder sharks in general have gotten a bad rap, and why so many beachgoers stay ashore when they think they might have spotted the telltale fin emerging from the water. Seeking to remedy this comes Please Be Nice to Sharks, a full-color children’s book that celebrates this ocean creature by zeroing in on the different species and their individual characteristics. Right from the start, readers will learn that “more people are injured every year from vending machines falling on them than from shark bites.” A brief introduction to each shark type, from the shortfin mako, to the great white, provides a fact-filled overview..but in a digestible format that kids can relate to (“Ahoy, matey. I’m a blue shark. I’m pretty easy to recognize because I’ve got a big ol’ nose and nice blue skin.”) While accompanying photos loom large, each shark profile is tempered by positive attributes (“Humans are never on our menu. Since the year 1850, only thirteen humans have been bitten by blue sharks…But ten to twenty MILLION blue sharks are fished each year!”), enabling kids to see sharks in a completely different, more realistic light. So, if you’re feeling vulnerable in the water this summer, this informative book may help put those fears to rest…for good.
In a Nutshell: Yes, it is safe to go back into the water. Please Be Nice to Sharks is a must for any budding marine biologist or any child who simply wants to learn more about ocean life.