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PUNIA AND THE KING OF SHARKS by Lee Wardlaw

PUNIA AND THE KING OF SHARKS

By Lee Wardlaw (Adaptor) , Felipe Davalos (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1997
ISBN: 0-8037-1682-6
Publisher: Dial

 This engrossing Hawaiian folktale combines lyrical language and a lush setting. Punia and his mother eat a boring diet of yams and poi because 11 frightening sharks guard the underwater cave where succulent lobsters can be found. The independent boy comes up with a clever idea to lure the sharks away, and catches his prize of two lobsters. Through trick after trick, Punia not only gains food but schemes to have the sharks banish one another from the area. When only he and the King of Sharks are left, his last trick fails. A few suspenseful sentences later, the shark problem is solved, and Punia is hailed as the new King of Sharks. The structure of the tale is timeless, and the artwork enhances every word. Davalos takes full advantage of the setting, both underwater and on land, capturing the shape of the lurking lobsters as well as the fierce aspects of the sharks; Punia's personality is caught in his sly smiles as he confidently hatches each plan. A skillful creation of a fantasy world. (glossary) (Picture book/folklore. 4-8)