JAB- favourite books of 2016!

A real challenge for us book-lovers to narrow it down to just one choice! Still, I decided it had to be done and asked members of JAB for their top picks of 2016!

Today, we hear from Emily and Tracy.


My favourite book of 2016…

Smart About Sharks by Owen Davey

Flying Eye      ISBN: 978-1909263918

Did you know that sharks can be found swimming in every ocean on the planet? Sharks are some of the most successful underwater hunters on Earth but there is so much more to learn about these amazing fish. Owen Davey’s latest book ‘Smart About Sharks’ explores so much about what makes a shark, a shark. Over the last 200 million years they have evolved to become the perfect predators adapting to their environments and passing these characteristics from generation to generation, making them the kings of the seas.

This incredible book has something for every shark/marine enthusiast to sink their teeth into. Whether it’s finding about the variety of sharks- the fastest, the highest jumper, the laziest; or simply learning about how social they are, this book is full of the most amazing fishy facts. Take a look at the average size of different species compared to each other and get to know both the smallest and the largest varieties of shark. With so many weird and wonderful shark families you will be amazed by the Goblin Shark, the Tropical Sawshark and even the Pyjama Shark!

Davey closes the book with a fascinating look at shark mythology. Many cultures around the world respect the shark, especially those that swim in surrounding waters, so it is natural that many legends and traditional tales feature these amazing creatures. Discover Mäna the Aboriginal shark that created the rivers of Australia, Ka-moho-ali’i the Hawaiian fish god and Dakuwaqa the Fijian half-man, half-shark god who is afraid of the giant octopus goddess.

Owen Davey’s unique style and restricted colour palette of pink, turquoise & lemon make this book a visual feast. The design is clean and uncluttered but full of artistic charm. Each page balances the authoritative feel of a 1950’s style text book with a colourful and engaging picture book simply begging to be enjoyed.

Recommended to fans of ‘Mad About Monkeys’ and the other recent publications from Flying Eye. This book is as much a work of art as it is a fact file of amazing information about the wonderful world of sharks.

I loved this book because during our holiday to Cornwall, Nathaniel and I were able to identify a shark’s egg after we had read the book together! Brilliant!


Eren by Simon P Clark

Atom    ISBN: 978-1472110985

My book of the year is Eren by Simon P Clark; it is the book that turned my son from a reader of obligation into a lover of books.

We shared Eren as a rather chilling bedtime story back in January and from the first few lines, the tense atmosphere of this page-turner had my boy gripped. Eren raised some huge questions in my young man and we had some very long, bookish conversations that I didn’t think you could have with a 10 year old!

Henry wrote to Simon P Clark telling him how much he had enjoyed Eren and sharing his theories on the story and he received a lovely handwritten reply in return that I know he will cherish forever.

It really is quite special to fall in love with reading but to be there when someone else does is a real honour and that is why Eren is my book of the year.