by Rafe Martin
New York, USA: Scholastic Press
Described as “ …a thrilling suspense story, a powerful morality tale and a gorgeous glimpse of a beautiful land…”, The Shark God tells the story of two young Hawaiian children, who are sentenced to death by the king when they are caught playing with his kapu (sacred) drum. In desperation, their parents go to the fearsome shark god, Kauhuhu. Although terrified of Kauhuhu, they ask for his help and he agrees, sending a huge storm to the island of Hawaii which frees the children. A gripping tale, which has been dramatically illustrated using watercolour images.
This book was nominated because of the shark god’s importance for a lot of Pacific people, as well as its attractive illustrations.
A New Zealand Curriculum-linked activity for this picture book can be found here.