Sharon Clark – an update on two new books for children

Sharon Clark was previously featured on Reading Recommendations in May, 2014. She is back now to tell us about the publication of two new children’s books!

A Strange Guest in an Ant's Nest

A Strange Guest in An Ant’s Nest
written by Sharon Clark
illustrated by Roberto Gonzalez
Genre: Children’s picture book

A Strange Guest in an Ant's Nest-4This picture book will delight children between the ages of 5 to 9. It is told in a unique story format from the perspective of Amber, a meadow ant. Children will learn some fascinating facts and behaviours of this type of ant, as the story unfolds.

Amber has recently emerged from her cocoon and is amazed at her surroundings. She quickly learns how to help with various duties. She carries eggs to warm and dry locations within the nest and helps to feed growing larvae.A Strange Guest in an Ant's Nest-3

One day she needs to leave her nest to bring back food – the consequence of an ant battle. Most of her trips to and from the nest are uneventful. But one of them is different. She encounters a large and different creature that frightens her. Amber fills the air with alarm scents to call for help from other workers. But when they arrive, they don’t attack. Instead, they do something strange – they transport this odd creature into their nest.

A Strange Guest in an Ant's Nest-2This picture book illustrates how insects that are very different from one another can live together in harmony. Their peaceful co-existence benefits both species. Kids can draw on their example. This story will encourage children to embrace the differences of others. It will help kids to understand that people of other cultures, religions and races enrich our lives in many ways. Without them, we would never have the opportunity to experience their delicious foods, unique music and art, or their interesting ideas.

The Caterpillar That Learned to Fly

The Caterpillar That Learned to Fly
written by Sharon Clark
illustrated by Roberto Gonzalez
Genre: Children’s picture book

The Caterpillar That Learned to Fly-2This picture book will delight children between the ages of 5 to 9. It is told in a unique story format from the perspective of Cutter a caterpillar. Children will learn fascinating facts about this caterpillar as the story unfolds. They will also discover the amazing transformation of one caterpillar into a butterfly.

Cutter is a caterpillar that eats, grows and sheds his outer skin a number of times. Although he lives a simple life on milkweed leaves, it often is filled with danger. The Caterpillar That Learned to Fly-3

A few weeks later he feels different, and he senses that he needs a very long rest. This time, as he hangs upside-down on the stalk of a milkweed leaf, great changes occur to his body. Cutter transforms into Flutter, a beautiful Monarch butterfly. The Caterpillar That Learned to Fly-4

He wastes no time in exploring a vast new world that he never knew existed. This book will let kids see how wondrous the natural world can be. It will also encourage them to follow Flutter’s example and discover what is beyond the world they are familiar with.

The Caterpillar That Learned to Fly-5

Where to buy Sharon’s books:
AmazonA Strange Guest in an Ant’s Nest
AmazonThe Caterpillar That Learned to Fly

Sharon Clark

Image 2(1)Sharon Clark

What is your latest release and what genre is it? I have two new releases. Both are children’s picture books that teach science (math or nature) not by telling, but by showing in a story format. The first is titled: 9X Fun. The second is titled: The Honeybee That Learned to Dance.

Quick description: 9X Fun – This picture book will delight children of all ages but will be especially appealing for any child between the ages of 7 to 9. It features a clever little mouse that shows kids the ease of learning the 9X table. The colourful illustrations and playful cartooning will allow kids to see math from a new perspective. Math can be fun! Children will quickly learn the 9X table once they see which patterns unfold. “9X Fun” will help kids enjoy math as never before and encourage them to explore the beauty in this science.

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The Honeybee That Learned to Dance – This picture book will delight children between the ages of 5 to 9. It is told in a unique story format from the perspective of Hummy, a honeybee. Children will learn some fascinating facts and behaviours of the honeybee as the story unfolds.

Hummy, is a honeybee that has finally grown big enough to take on the important duties of a forager. She doesn’t want to let the other bees down so she worries about many things. Will she be able to find pollen and nectar to bring back to the colony? What if she gets lost and can’t find her way back? And even if she manages to return to the hive with food, will she remember how to dance to tell the others where the food is located?

Hummy bravely overcomes her fears and surprises even herself by becoming a superb forager. Hummy will inspire every child to overcome fear of failure and encourage each of them to try new things. Just like Hummy, they will see how much they truly are capable of when they bravely test their abilities.

Honeybee cover

Brief biography:
Sharon Clark kept a journal after her only child Jeffery, was diagnosed with a rare brain tumour at the age of 14 months. She chronicled not only the treatments that he endured, but also the agony, despair and isolation that a parent feels when going through such an ordeal. When he died two weeks before his second birthday, she felt compelled to write – not only as a means of therapy, but also so that other parents in similar situations might learn what to expect, what pitfalls to avoid and what she learned in the process. She also hoped to give friends and family members some insight as to what is and what is not helpful in such situations. Her writing culminated in her first non-fiction adult book Not Our Baby was published in 1984 by Detselig Enterprises, Calgary.

Subsequently, Sharon and her husband Archie, had three more children – all girls. Once the youngest entered grade one, Sharon decided that the time had come to pursue a passion that wouldn’t go away – to eventually work in cancer research. She obtained a degree in Cell, Microbial and Molecular Biology from the University of Calgary in 1998 and currently works in research there.

But during her undergraduate degree, Sharon studied many fascinating areas of science, including botany and zoology. She was blown away by the beauty and wonder of nature which eventually she experienced first-hand from her cabin in the mountains. She yearned to impart the sense of awe that she felt to her girls. But, to her dismay, many of the science books written for children were simply a collection of facts, and her children had no interest in them.

What a shame, she thought, that we can’t make science more fun for kids. So to this end, she has written three nature picture books for kids and one math book. She uses story formats for the nature books and a rhyming format for her math book. Two of these books, 9X Fun and The Honeybee That Learned to Dance, were published in April 2014.

Links to buy Sharon’s book:
9X Fun – Paperback
Amazon Canada, US, UK

The Honeybee That Learned to Dance – Paperback
Amazon Canada, US, UK

Sharon’s promo links:
Facebook
LinkedIn

What are you working on now?
Currently, Sharon is working on a research-based mystery novel, Timelag, where a researcher discovers a gene involved in aging and learns how to stop the aging process. A co-worker becomes an unwitting pawn in his research and it changes the course of her life and the direction of humanity. This book won second place in a Canadian writing contest (Coffee Shop Author Contest) in May, 2011. This year, it was entered in The Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest, which accepts 10,000 entries each year. Timelag succeeded in moving into the second round of 2,000 entries (400 entries in each of 5 categories), then on April 14th moved into the Quarter Finals. It succeeded in becoming one of the top 100 entries in the Mystery category. The book is still in development but is approximately 85% complete. (Free excerpt still available at Amazon.)

Sharon’s reading recommendation:
Jonathan Kellerman: Mystery