True story. The school run started this morning with a litany of questions posed from the back seat of the car about snails and slugs. It’s a damp, grey day in London, you see, and on the pavement outside our house, the morning commute was being acted out in miniature by a seemingly endless procession of slimy creatures. This got the questions rolling for my three and four-year-olds in the car. Suddenly, though, the line of questioning veered from the easily answerable “What do slugs eat?” and “Can the snails get in the car?”, to the very left field, “Do crabs have teeth?” First, I panicked. Then, I remembered we could look it up in Yuval Zommer’s brilliant new book, The Big Book of the Blue.
The Big Book of the Blue is the third in Yuval’s Big Book Series (there are bug and beast companions). All of the books pair super-fun illustrations with engaging answers to just the kinds of questions I got hit with this morning. So, if you can relate to endless rounds of questioning on whales, snails, or honeybadgers, Yuval has the perfect series of books for you and GET THIS — we are GIVING AWAY a bumper pack of ALL THREE BOOKS and companion STICKER BOOKS for The Big Book of Bugs and The Big Book of Beasts! Head over to @twoinatepee on Instagram to get in the running to win, but before you do, here are Yuval’s five favourite fishy facts which he learned while working on The Big Book Of The Blue:
1. Sea turtles can eat jellyfish without getting stung! The problem is sometimes hungry sea turtles mistake plastic bags for jellyfish as both are transparent and look like floating balloons in the water. The turtle cannot digest the plastic and it can clog its stomach.
2. Flying fish are very cleverly designed by Mother Nature. Not only can they flap their fins like wings, a flying fish is also blue on top so a bird flying above can’t spot it against the sea and its silver tummy makes it look like the sky to the hungry fish swimming below!
3. As if seahorses weren’t pretty enough, every seahorse has its own special crown called a ‘coronet’. No two crowns are the same, just like a human fingerprint!
4. Sometimes the tiny krill form huge swarms that can make the ocean look pink. Krill swarms have been seen from space! Some krill can even glow in the dark and shimmer under the surface of the sea.
5. Crabs are ‘friendly’! A crab says ‘hello’ by waving its claws. It can also send messages to other crabs by tapping on rocks!
Yuval Zommer graduated from London’s Royal College of Art with an MA in Illustration. He has worked as a creative director at many leading advertising agencies.
Yuval’s passion for picture books has now won, and he is the author/illustrator of many highly acclaimed children’s books. Yuval lives and works in an old house in Notting Hill where he overlooks a small garden which is visited by urban foxes, squirrels, birds and many insects, some of which later find their way into his stories. His other favourite places are The Natural History Museum and the Zoo.
Yuval has won the Heart of Hawick’s Children’s Book Award 2015 in the best new picture book category and his work has been nominated for the SLA Information Book Award 2017 and the 2018 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal.