This story is mainly directed to 6+ years old children and it is composed of 11 illustrations; each constitutes 2 pages (22 pages in total). This story is different from other children's educational stories because it is very simple and straightforward in describing the importance of the marine food chain from base (phytoplankton and zooplankton) to the top (large fish and mammals). The story sheds light on the importance of the base and how its elimination or heavy decline, would mean no food for higher levels and that will cause massive mortalities. The food chain also explains how fish larvae depend on zooplankton to survive and grow and how zooplanktons in turn depend on phytoplankton for the same reasons. In addition, the story shows how the largest animal on Earth (the Blue Whale) depends on a certain zooplankton species (Krills) as a main source of food and how pollution is affecting the life at sea by eliminating the food from the base of the food chain. The story also describes the feeding mechanism of blue and other baleen whales on krills, showing the role of baleen in the mouth of the blue whale in krill capture as well as other baleen whales. The story highlights pollution by showing the most common sources of pollution (garbage on beaches and oil pollution) with recommendations on what should be done in both cases and how this affects the marine food chain. Technical aspects regarding the art and format of this book are also distinctive through mixing both styles of illustrations and comics, which is something rarely seen in this genre. The synopsis in the back cover is narrated by one of the characters, in children's illustrated stories is rare if not seen for the first time in "Wade the Whale". The covers (as well as the pages inside) form a single picture when spread out and the colours used are similar to those in nature to allow the viewers to get a feeling of the environment hence attracting them to the book. For the aforementioned reasons, we think children would be very attracted and may immensely learn from this story, as well as the parents/teachers will undoubtedly recommend the story for their children/pupils.
A PhD student at the University of Sheffield, UK and a marine biologist at Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research, who loves the sea and researching plankton and food web interactions. Also, writing, especially for children, is an essential part of the author’s life in order to educate them about science in a very simple, fun and interactive way. This is his first published book in English and he has published a children’s short story in Japanese in 2011 along with two short story-collections in Arabic in 2004 plus writing a play for children that was performed in Kuwait in 2010.
Wade the Whale is a nice story. The main thing i like is the idea which is talking about how the pollution affect the sea life. in addition to the nice scientific information about the sea food chain because the writer is marine biologist as written on the book cover so these are well presented in the story and it will add some scientific knowledge to the kids.especially with lovely colorful graphics which attract even small age kids.