Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Kobee Manatee: A Wild Weather Adventure - a bookwrap


Authored by Robert Scott Thayer

Illustrated by Lauren Gallegos

Ages 4-8

Unwrapping some illustrations for you...

About the book...

Three friends: Kobee, a Manatee; Tess, a seahorse; and a hermit crab named Pablo decide to swim from KeyWest Florida all the way to the Bahamas to wish Kobee's sister Kim a very happy birthday.  What an amazing surprise and gift to give her! 

The 300-mile adventure is not easy and they experience many challenges along the way.  They must brave the danger of being caught up in a waterspout, a severe electrical thunderstorm, and a powerful hurricane, just to name a few. With encouragement to each other and perseverance not to give up, the three hang in and finally arrive at their coral reef destination. 

On every page is a box entitled, "Kobee's Fun Facts".  The author has cleverly included educational and actual weather facts for the reader to learn more of what the trio is experiencing as they travel along their route to the calm and beautiful warm waters of the Bahamas.  

The book explains what types of clouds are displayed in the sky, how to protect yourself if a thunderstorm threatens, and what the eye of a hurricane is.  It further tells kids why the sky is blue, how weather temperature is measured, (Fahrenheit v.s. Celsius), and get this... that a raindrop falls at an average speed of 17 miles an hour.  Who knew?  All the information put forth is kid-friendly and I am sure adults will learn from it too. 

The illustrations are playful, colourful and packed full of underwater activity and creatures.  I love the vibrant, colour pallet and friendly faces on each one. They are created in colourful acrylic on illustration board and make the text almost animated.  The storyline is simple and engaging and the meteorological facts take the book to a whole new level of learning.  The quality of the book on a whole is very rich and classy and would make a wonderful gift for your marine-minded child.  I would recommend a copy of this book to be in classrooms and in school libraries.  

About the author

Author Robert Scott Thayer is also a musician and has won several International Songwriting Awards including those from Billboard. Grammy Award winner, Jim Cravero, produces his newest children’s tune, Kobee’s Song. It’s fun, upbeat, and has a solid reggae groove. 

Ever since he was young, Robert had a passion for manatees. His admiration for these endangered marine mammals grew, which resulted in Thayer studying manatees in greater detail. His plans include creating a complete Kobee Manatee series, which is educational, entertaining, and fun for children, parents, grandparents, teachers, and librarians.

Thayer also has a strong interest in weather and sea life, which are subjects for other titles in his Kobee Manatee series. Robert has a degree from Temple University. He is also a member of the SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) and the Save the Manatee Club in Maitland, Florida. Robert currently resides in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

About the illustrator...

Lauren Gallegos earned her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Illustration from Cal State Fullerton in 2009 and has been freelance illustrating ever since. When it comes to children’s stories, Lauren has always loved books that warm the heart and touch the soul.
As a WEB young girl she loved to pour over illustrations that were rich and full. Lauren still loves to create illustrations that take you to mysterious places and let your imagination run wild with possibilities. Her biggest illustration influences are Chris Van Allsburg, Loren Long, Chris Sheban, and Scott Gustafson to name only a few. Lauren has illustrated several children’s books already, and continues to look for opportunities to illustrate great stories with the desire to see how her work will impact the young minds of our future.

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