When we lived in the south of the Netherlands, the easiest fossils to find were the fossil sharks’ teeth that washed up on the seashore near Cadzand, Zeeland. Soon I had a collection of large-ish ones to put on the shelf behind the downstairs loo:
I found out a lot of cool facts about fossil sharks and sharks in general - for example, in a lifetime, a shark can get through more than 10,000 teeth. When I was thinking of a picture book story that required two inseparable friends, a great white shark and a remora were the first things that popped into my head. I was thrilled when my story was paired with Charles Fuge's wonderful illustrations.
After I moved back to England, two more sharky stories came along:
On my birthday, I was given a huge fossil tooth - no loo shelf for this one, it sits in pride of place on my desk.
It was fabulous to discover that, in Florida, you can pick up fossil sharks' teeth on a warm sunny beach! Here’s a handful of small ones I found at Manasota Key, near Venice, Florida. They're great giveaways whenever I sign a Gilbert book.
and follow that with key lime pie floating on streaks of raspberry blood and topped with a gummy shark at Sharky’s on the Pier, Venice FL!
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