Dr Mark Norman is following on from cute penguins in the best-selling "The Penguin Book: Birds in Suits" to another hot topic for kids in "The Shark Book: Fish with Attitude". This is not your usual big-fish-with-scary-teeth book. Mark is passionate about the diversity in the world around us. There are 370 species of shark in the world and Australia is home to a massive 166 of them. Only three species regularly attack humans; the great white, the tiger and the family of whalers, which includes the nicely named bull shark.
People eat over 70 million sharks, or so I've been told, and in Australia there have been an average of 1.2 shark attack fatalities each year over the last 200 years. A swimmer is at a much greater risk of drowning than of being attacked by a shark and less than half of the attacks lead to a fatality.
Sharks are an extraordinary bunch. Some sharks are so small they can fit on your hand.My favourites are the cookie cutter sharks who attach themselves to passing beasts with lips like suction cups, and then spin around to cut out a cookie-shaped plug of flesh. One submersible came back from the depths with a nice cookie-shaped hole in its thick plastic window.
Watch out for it! It's an amazing book.