#564 – The Shark Whisperer #1: Tristan Hunt and the Sea Guardians by Ellen Prager

shark whisperer.

The Shark Whisperer #1: Tristan Hunt and the Sea Guardians

by Ellen Prager

Scarlett Junior Readers


Age 8 to 12        288 pages


“Things are beginning to look up for clumsy Tristan Hunt. After falling into a pool of sharks, Tristan is invited to an ocean-themed summer camp in the Florida Keys. He soon discovers that he and the other young teens there have special talents when it comes to the ocean. When the camp receives a distress call from ocean animals, Tristan and his new friends get pulled into a daring rescue in the Bahamas. With sharks, dolphins, and quick-escape-artist octopus, can the campers outwit and evil shark-finning, reef-blasting billionaire?”


“A sudden unnatural hush fell over the crowd. All eyes were fixed on the pool below.”

The Story

Tristan spends his summer at the Florida Keys Sea Park Summer Camp. He and the other campers all have some unusual ability related to the ocean. Tristan can relate to sharks. He hones this ability during most of the summer camp. A billionaire accused of shark-finning holds three older campers hostage on his ship. The simple rescue mission Tristan and the other new campers become involved in turns out to be a more dangerous mission than originally planned. Tristan and the others may not get back to camp before the billionaire’s goonies harm them. This would not go over well with parents expecting to pick up sons and daughters at camp’s end.


The Shark Whisperer takes place in one of my favorite places: waters south of Florida. Each camper has a special ability related to the ocean and its creatures. Tristan found he could relate to and understand sharks after falling into a Sea World-type amusement park’s shark tank. Tristan makes two new friends and the three bond over the summer. Friendship is a big deal in The Shark Whisperer as is loyalty, confidentiality, bravery, and self-sacrifice. The ocean life knowing how to “speak” to humans is a fascinating idea, though made up. Even though the characters and their abilities are not real, it is easy to suspend belief while reading the story.

There is much action in The Shark Whisperer, some of which is funny and a little gross. Birds help the campers with the rescue by pooping on top the billionaire’s goonies, on cue, and throwing . . .  well, that one I’ll let you find out on your own, but trust me it is hilarious, especially when the billionaire goes out on . . . there I go again giving away great moments. I loved the way the ocean and marina animals worked together, even those that are natural enemies. Once the problem is resolved, the natural order of life resumes as if nothing had happened.

Dr. Prager inserts much ocean science into the story, mostly about marine life. In the back of the book, she wrote a short note to the reader explaining what was real and what was not. You may be surprised at some of those that are real. The billionaire’s actions are real. There are those that cut the fin from sharks for a soup considered an expensive delicacy in Asia. Shark finning is especially heinous as are damaging reefs, and blasting the seabed.

map camp

The Shark Whisperer takes kids on a journey through the ocean, viewing much of it from the animals’ perspective. This is a science fiction / adventure story with real ocean conservation as the theme. At an awkward age, Tristan cannot keep up with his growing body and tends to trip over his large feet. When swimming, Tristan finds he is a marvel in the water. As his confidence grows so do his abilities. The Shark Whisperer will excite kids about the ocean and preserving it for generations to come. While not the reason for writing the book, it is a wonderful offshoot that may one day return the ocean to the glory it once was.

The author holds a PhD, is a marine scientist, and was once the chief scientist at the world’s only undersea research station in the Florida Keys. The camp is somewhat based on this research station.  All of Dr. Prager’s credentials, degrees, and experience make her one of, if not the, smartest people in ocean science today. Her writing is engaging and interesting. I hope this series has a long run. As it is, The Shark Whisperer has stayed in my head for days after finishing—in good way, if you don’t mind three kids—and one reader—itching to go back to camp.

THE SHARK WHISPERER. Text copyright © 2014 by Dr. Ellen Prager. Illustrations copyright © by Antonio Javier Caparo. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Scarletta Junior Reader, an imprint of Scarletta Press, Minneapolis, MN.


Lean more about The Shark Whisperer HERE.

Buy The Shark Whisperer at AmazonB&NScarletta Pressyour local bookstore.


Meet the author, Dr. Ellen Prager, at her website:     http://www.earth2ocean.net/

Meet the illustrator, Antonio Javier Caparo, at his website:  http://www.antoniocaparo.com/ 

For more books by the publisher Scarletta Junior Reader, go to their website:  http://scarlettapress.com/



How to Enter? – Leave a comment. For more entries, return through the 18th, comment on the posts, and then again click on the Rafflecopter link here: a Rafflecopter giveaway



shark whisperer


Here are the prizes you can win during Children’s Book Week by leaving a comment and using the Rafflecopter at the above link:

1 of 3 3-month subscription to Farfaria, unlimited stories for your child.

a copy of The Shark Whisperer, the new series from Scarletta Press by Dr. Ellen Prager,

a copy of Josh and the Gumshoe News Crew, the new book by Melissa Perry Moraja,

a copy of Lately Lily, the new book  from Chronicle Books by Micah Player

1 of 3 copies of Bear’s Big Bottom, a new book from Capstone by Steve Smallman & Emma Yarlett,

1 of 3 copies of Lost Little Penguin, a new book from Capstone by Tracey Corderoy & Gavin Scott,



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22 thoughts on “#564 – The Shark Whisperer #1: Tristan Hunt and the Sea Guardians by Ellen Prager

  1. Pingback: #829 – Stingray City by Ellen Prager Plus a Giveaway of Books 1 & 2, Signed by the Author | Kid Lit Reviews

  2. Pingback: Stingray City, Tristan Hunt and the Sea Guardians #3 – Cover Reveal | Kid Lit Reviews

  3. Pingback: #748 – The Shark Rider: Tristan Hunt and the Sea Guardians #2 by Ellen Prager | Kid Lit Reviews

  4. Pingback: Interview with Dr. Ellen Prager, author of The Shark Whisperer | Kid Lit Reviews

  5. What a great story! This sounds like a book to add to our summer reading list. Thanks for sharing!


  6. I feel your pain! Hope that this gets a bit of visibility–it looks like a book that’s both fun and has an important message. And nice to see that the predators (the animal ones, anyway!) aren’t the bad guys for once. Sharks have a dreadful overbite, but they still need our love!


    • It is AWESOME! I think you would love this series. I am betting each book will stand on its own, so check out the publisher and review book 2, maybe book 1 will come with it. Seriously, I know they would love a kid reviewer of your caliber. You will enjoy these stories. If not, I’ll write your review. 😀

      Yes, you are loyal follower #1, as I recall!! 😀


  7. There’s nothing like a lil’ ocean intrigue. This book sounds like a great read. Super review, Sue!


    • The story is very good–a series–with adventure, magical creatures (of sorts) who talk to humans and human kids who can hear and talk right back. It is about the animals in the ocean getting kids’ help to save it from human destruction before there is no ocean left to save. The author is a top notch expert in the field and there is a lot of science hidden in the stories for kids to learn by osmosis. 🙂


  8. The title drew me into your blog. Since sharks aren’t my favorite, I had to see what this story was about. It sounds like a great journey for the kids at the camp. The map is great. I love stories that encourage kids to want to learn more about the ocean and preservation.


    • Your welcome. I think my giveaway week iis tanking – no pun intended, okay, yes it was. bI wish I could actually show the raffle coter on the page like others can but wordpress.cm won’t allow it, so I have a link to the raffle copter. I think that is killing this week. Frustration is really high. 😦

      Thank you for leaving a comment. I’m glad I have one loyal reader/friend. 🙂


      • From everything I’ve witnessed since I started following you, my dear, is that you have MANY loyal readers (and friends)! And I’ll suggest putting the raffle reminder and link close to the top (maybe just after the blog post title?) in LARGE BLOCK FONT in RED 🙂


        • I know I have loads of supporters here and I love every one of them. It is just frustrating to put in this much work, plus hit a bunch of other sites, etc. etc. and bomb out. Just frustrated. Nothing more. 😦 Thanks for the suggestions. Will see if they work. fingers crossed 🙂


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