Manfish: The Story of Jacques Cousteau

by Jennifer Berne and Eric Puybaret

“Bubbles rising through the silence of the sea, silvery beads of breath from... read more

“Bubbles rising through the silence of the sea, silvery beads of breath from a man deep, deep down in a strange and shimmering ocean land.” Jennifer Berne’s lyrical introduction begins a fascinating look at the life work of explorer Jacques Cousteau. Berne relates how Cousteau’s career as an underwater explorer and documenter of life beneath the ocean’s surface combined two of his childhood loves: water and movie-making. But it was a life-changing glimpse of the world beneath the water through goggles that led Cousteau to discover his passion. Working with two longtime friends, he created the aqualung that enables divers to breathe underwater, and he came up with a way to protect his movie camera so that he could film the undersea world that fascinated him. As Berne explains, those films gave people all over the world a new understanding of ocean life, and later offered up some of the first warnings of the toll of human pollution on life beneath the sea. Fluid lines, watery hues, and distinctive figures distinguish Êric Puybaret’s illustrations in this beautifully designed picture book biography. (Ages 5–8)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2009

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