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Shark Nate-O

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Nate loves sharks. He reads shark books every day, watches sharks on TV, and talks about them nonstop. He even likes to pretend he’s a shark wherever he goes! However, there is one small problem. . . .

Nate can’t swim.

When his older brother points this out, Nate works hard to overcome his fears and learn how to blow bubbles, use a kickboard, and finally swim without help, as quickly and as gracefully as a shark. Will he be able to beat his brother in a swim tryout and get his bite back?

40 pages, Hardcover

Published April 3, 2018

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Tara Luebbe

7 books51 followers

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 91 reviews
Profile Image for Melki.
5,789 reviews2,339 followers
March 2, 2020
Nate is obsessed with sharks, but pretending to be one might just help him learn to swim.


Cute story, and one I couldn't pass by . . . especially since my oldest son is named Nate.
Profile Image for Karla Valenti.
Author 7 books34 followers
July 27, 2017
Tara's debut picture book, SHARK NATE-O is an adorable tale of a dreamer who refuses to let go of his dream, in spite of the greatest of challenges. The precocious MC bubbles with personality and dedication (traits that come through brilliantly in the illustrations). The plot line is a familiar one, and one with which any reader will quickly identify. The text is rich with humor and word play that will delight young readers and amuse the adults as well. This is a wonderful addition to any child's bookshelf and a great source of inspiration for the dreamer in all of us.
Profile Image for Becky Shillington.
32 reviews47 followers
August 2, 2017
Nate loves sharks so much that he thinks he IS one. But one big thing stands between Nate and true sharkiness—he can’t swim! With the help of his teacher Ms. Deborah, Nate dives into swimming lessons and uses his vast shark knowledge to help him master different skills and strokes. As he gains confidence and conquers his fears, he proves that he can accomplish anything he sets his mind to and becomes a real SHARK NATE-O!

This book is perfect for children learning to swim, experienced swim-team kids, and anyone who loves sharks. The accompanying shark facts also make this a perfect book for science lessons and cross-curricular instruction in elementary classrooms. The authors have done a wonderful job balancing fact and fiction, and I predict a long shelf-life for this delightful book!
Profile Image for Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow.
Author 7 books140 followers
November 18, 2017
Chock full of puns, silly allusions, onomatopoeia, and alliteration, this is a humorous story about a boy (Nate) who wants to be a shark. One problem: Nate doesn't know how to swim! Kids who love "jawsome" wordplay as well as those who are learning how to swim will enjoy this story. The "Nate's Facts about Sharks" section at the end includes fascinating facts about some unusual sharks. All in all, this is a fun read.
Profile Image for Christina Carter.
242 reviews32 followers
December 28, 2017
Note: Adavance Reader Edition | Book releases Apil 2018

I like Nate. He's a smart kid who knows how to use his resources to discover and understand the world around him. Nate loves sharks, a LOT, so he studies them and collects numerous facts that he shares with anyone who will listen (find Nate's Shark Facts at the end of the book). He often pretends to be a shark. His older brother however, is unimpressed and declares that Nate is not a real shark because he can't swim. Nate didn't let this fact stop him though. He makes plans to learn how to swim so he can live up to his nickname: Shark Nate-O. To do this, he has to be brave in a way that he's never known. Ultimately, perseverance will cause Nate to prevail. I found myself rooting Nate on as he faced and conquered his fears. I wanted to see him succeed and you will too.

Shark Nate-O by Tara Luebbe Shark Nate-O

Tara Luebbe Tara Luebbe
Profile Image for Shan Salter.
80 reviews13 followers
March 27, 2018
@kidlitexchange #partner #bookstagram #kidlitexchange #kidlit

By Becky Cattie & Tara Luebbe
(Illustrated by Daniel Duncan)

Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for the review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

Nate loves sharks and knows a whole lot about them. He especially loves chomp, chomp, chomping around the house. But he has a problem. As skilled as Nate is at being shark-like, he can’t swim.

Nate heads to swim lessons armed with a bunch of shark facts swirling in his mind and plenty of determination. He practices his tail off learning to blow bubbles, kick, float, and paddle. But will all his hard work in the pool be enough to land him a spot on the Amity Sharks Swim Team and prove to his brother that he really is Jawsome?

This cute story includes many interesting shark facts and will be an instant winner with shark enthusiasts and anyone who knows how tough swimming lessons can be. Although the ending seemed a little unrealistic, the sentiment —the importance of hard work and practice in goal acquisition — was spot on.

Three cheers for Shark Nate-O!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Andrea.
26 reviews
April 15, 2018
@kidlitexchange #partner
Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for the review copy of Shark Nate-O. All opinions are my own.
Have you ever found yourself with a child who knows everything there is to know about a certain type of animal? Sharks, perhaps? Well, Nate knows all there is to know about sharks, loves them, and aspires to be a shark. There’s just one small problem...Nate doesn’t know how to swim. Becky Cattie and Tara Luebbe have written a cute story that shows that we can always learn something new, we can always work toward a goal. I can see this book being used in primary level classrooms when learning about growth mindset. Kids will not only learn about Nate, but they will also learn facts about sharks (there’s a neat reference page at the back, giving “Nate’s Shark Facts” about all of the types of sharks mentioned in the story). The illustrations are adorable with fun details like the “Welcome to our ool” sign at the pool (“Notice there is no ‘p’ in it. Let’s keep it that way.”) If you have a shark lover or someone learning to swim in your life, this would be a great book to share!
#kidlitexchange #sharknateo #picturebooks #learntoswim #bookstagram
Profile Image for Cathy Mealey.
Author 3 books24 followers
April 24, 2018
Nate is a shark fanatic, but must learn how to swim before he can transform into the one and only SHARK NATE-O in this pool perfect fish tale from Luebbe and Cattie.

Obsessed with sharks, Nate fills his world with shark facts that he can’t resist sharing and even acting out, much to his older brother’s chagrin. But when it comes to light that Nate can’t swim, he isn’t put off for long. Enrolling in swim lessons, Nate learns to prove his water-worthiness by blowing bubbles, using a kickboard, and eventually swimming solo. Will Nate’s determination and persistence pay off in time to challenge his brother in tryouts for the ultimate prize – membership on the Shark swim team?

Duncan’s fun illustrations make a splash in noteworthy settings by incorporating plenty of shark décor and pool puns. Filled with heart and humor, Nate’s expressions and body language invigorate the appealing story with clever, imaginative elements. The authors include more shark facts at the end for readers who just can’t get enough of this jaw-some tale perfect for enjoying between summer swims. Download an activity kit here.
Profile Image for Tracy.
171 reviews13 followers
November 9, 2017
Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for the review copy of SHARK NATE-O. As always, all opinions are my own.

SHARK NATE-O is the perfect book for little swimmers who are working to overcome their water fears. I appreciated how the authors showed Nate’s progression from overconfidence, to fear, to timid attempts, to skills mastery. Even with his affinity for shark culture, Nate had to put in a lot of hard work to reach his goals—and that’s something we all need to remember.

But the book offers much more than a swimming lesson. True to Nate’s age group, the young boy stays in his shark character throughout the story. He emulates the characteristics of different species, offering us a shark education along the way. Kids who, like Nate, really love sharks will be happy with the back matter, which contains facts and illustrations about each shark mentioned in the book.

Pair SHARK NATE-O with the excellent picture book JABARI JUMPS for a swimming, diving, no-fear-here combination.
1,137 reviews2 followers
March 17, 2018
Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for the review copy of this book - all opinions are my own. #partner

“Shark Nate-o” is a fun story for preschoolers, or any child learning to conquer a fear. Nate is a little boy how loves all things shark. He is pretty much as close to a shark expert as a kid could get, except for one problem...he is afraid to learn to swim. Will Nate finally get up the courage to swim with the sharks, or will he continue to flounder with the fishes?
One of the highlights of this story are the bold and interesting word choice. Children can discover lots of new fun words in this short story. The humorous illustrations also add an extra little element to the story. I do have to say, my favorite part of the book is the page of truly fascinating shark facts at the end. I think this book would be a great way to get kids interesting in diving deeper into the shark world, or as a way to warm up to the idea of swimming lessons.
Profile Image for Shauna.
26 reviews
May 24, 2018
The title of this children’s book grabbed my attention immediately, and the story itself did NOT disappoint! Nate is a cute kid who is OBSESSED with sharks – you know that kid who spits out rapid-fire facts on their favorite subject? Yep, that’s him. But even though he loves the ocean-dwelling creatures, Nate himself is not so keen on being in the water, as swimming is not his strong suit. Facing his fears, Nate takes swim lessons and slowly but surely becomes an amazing swimmer! This story comes in handy as some of our own kiddos are hesitant about becoming little sharks themselves… they prefer to stay in the shallow end, so Nate’s bravery is a great example of working hard to conquer your fears or challenges! We were lucky enough to be able to read an “F&G” copy of this book (I had to look it up – it means Folded & Gathered), thanks to Kid Lit Exchange! I’m so happy I had the chance to read this delightful book with our kiddos!
Profile Image for Hannah Holt.
Author 3 books55 followers
March 7, 2018
Nate is child that self-identifies as a shark. :) He loves spouting shark facts and CHOMPING everything in sight.

However, his older brother bursts his shark-bubble when he points out Nate can't swim.

Nate starts swim lessons with his usual enthusiasm only to need a pool rescue. This throws a bit of a wet blanket on his shark...er...swimming lessons. Nate becomes afraid of the water, but by small swimming tasks his teacher brings him back from the deep end of his fear. Then through hard work he masters a simple stroke and more.

This book is shark-tastic! Perfect for shark lovers, reluctant swimmers, and summer story time! Kids will relate to Nate's exuberance and cheer him on as he learns to swim. The illustrations are also packed with subtle pool jokes. It's a short story with a big bite.
Profile Image for Jessie Oliveros.
Author 3 books52 followers
April 6, 2018
This was such a fun book! It's perfect for shark-lovers and swimmers--especially hesitant swimmers. I love the idea of a boy who LOVES sharks but doesn't know how to swim. The story begins with Nate's endearing obsession with sharks, then the reveal (by his over-confident, award-winning, swim-team brother) that Nate doesn't swim. What follows are Nate's attempts at fixing this, from flat-out jumping in, to his lessons and determined practices. Kids will recognize the steps of learning how to swim (blowing bubbles, face under water, etc.). The shark theme is carried throughout which makes these pages even more fun. When Nate gets his chance to try out for the swim team, The Sharks, his nerves are palpable--as is his pride when he makes the team. The back matter on sharks was super interesting. This book will appeal to kids on so many levels!
Profile Image for Susan.
500 reviews2 followers
December 1, 2017
Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for the review copy of this book - all opinions are my own.

Nate loves sharks. He can tell you any fact you might want to know about any shark on earth. His only problem, though, is that he can’t swim. In fact, he might even be a little bit afraid of the water. He knows this just won’t do, so he’s determined to make a change. Nate shows a great deal of courage, perseverance and determination during the many weeks that are necessary for him to learn to swim. But he succeeds! This would be a great book to share with your little one who is just beginning swim lessons, or is afraid of the water. It will help give them the courage that it is truly possible to become a shark!

Profile Image for Sarah Reul.
Author 13 books36 followers
December 18, 2017
Chomp CHOMP! The story of SHARK NATE-O (written by Becky Carrie & Tara Luebbe, illustrated by Daniel Duncan, published by Little Bee Books) follows “frightful, bite-ful,” shark-loving Nate as he draws inspiration from his favorite animal to overcome the challenge of learning how to swim. The illustrations are packed with energetic, sketchy lines and lots of fun shark-related details for little readers to spot. A full spread of fascinating shark facts rounds off the end of the book.

Would make a fun read-aloud for shark-lovers, kids learning how to swim or for anyone looking for a way to be inspired to overcome new challenges.

P.S. Lots of giggles will come from sign on the wall opposite the page where Nate splashes into the pool.

Profile Image for Christy.
Author 30 books22 followers
February 10, 2018
Nate is so obsessed with sharks that he pretends to be one (CHOMP!), but realizes that he can't swim. Swim lessons with Coach Debra follow, and despite an initial cold dash of reality, Nate is determined to learn. He takes inspiration from his knowledge of sharks (sharks are fearless; must keep moving at all times . . .) and he works hard. Readers routing for him will be happy with the results of the swim team tryouts. A winner! I really like the word play (frightful, bite-ful; kicked like a carnivore; fin-tastic!) and the illustrations add a lot of fun. Check out the sign at the pool! Illustrated back matter includes "Nate's Shark Facts" for additional fun facts about these fascinating animals. (I reviewed an advance reader's copy.)
Profile Image for Becky B.
7,492 reviews94 followers
July 31, 2020
Nate is obsessed with sharks. There's just one thing holding him back from practically being a shark. He can't swim. But when his first day of swim lessons is a colossal flop, will Nate's shark days be over or will he stick it out to become the one and only Shark Nate-O?

A good story about perseverance and overcoming a bad experience in the water. Nate is quite the colorful character who will stick with readers long after the close the pages. There's also some info on sharks mentioned in the book in the back. Nate's success rate seems a little unrealistic, but you never know how kids will surprise you when they are super motivated. Recommended for readers who are a little wary of the water and those who like humorous or inspiring stories.
Profile Image for Amber Webb.
729 reviews12 followers
January 6, 2018
Shark Nate-O by Tara Luebbe had a character main character who demonstrated overcoming fears, perseverance and lot of sharks! I think there will be many children that relate to Nate who has a deep passion for sharks and wants nothing more to be a shark, but doesn't know how to swim. I love that he used his love of sharks to overcome his fear of the water and learning how to swim. I have students in my class that I know will love this book. They will enjoy the story, but will also spend a great deal of time with "Nate's Shark Facts" at the end of the book. I would recommend this for classrooms studying sharks or talking about perseverance.
Profile Image for Shelley.
445 reviews19 followers
October 5, 2019
This is a great story about motivation and not giving up on your dreams, even if there are some obstacles along the way.

That’s what Nate discovered in “Shark Nate-O”. Nate is just obsessed with sharks and wants to join the Sharks swim team, but one problem, he doesn’t know how to swim!

With a bit of determination, coaching from his swim instructor, he learns to be a great swimmer!

P.S. In addition, readers will enjoy funny swim pool jokes. For example floating bandaids in the pool and taking the “p” as in (pee) out of the word “pool”. I just love that kind of visual and word play in books!
Profile Image for Jess.
Author 3 books11 followers
July 31, 2017
Shark Nate-O is a funny and heartwarming story of a shark-obsessed boy named Nate who is missing one important thing on his quest to becoming just like one of his favorite predators - he can't swim. Readers will follow Nate through his personal journey from land-locked shark admirer to an awesome, jawsome swimmer. This is the perfect read for kids facing their first swim lessons or shark lovers, and the fun shark facts add a little non-fiction fun. Your kids will cheer for Shark Nate-O the whole book!
Profile Image for Margaret.
Author 4 books33 followers
February 8, 2018
Shark Nate-O is a charming and humorous story perfect for anyone who loves sharks or swimming (or those who simply enjoy a funny story). Nate, the main character, is obsessed with sharks and lives in shark-mode 24x7. Except his big brother points out that Nate can't swim. He takes it to heart and forms a plan of attack--learn to swim. But it's not so easy. Readers will happily cheer Nate on and learn fun facts about sharks along the way. The text is fun and full of puns. The illustrations are expressive and funny themselves. Overall, a book to be read over and over again!
Profile Image for Cindy Johnson.
Author 1 book5 followers
May 6, 2018
When shark-loving Nate needs to join the swim team to prove that he is a "real" shark, he doesn't think it will be a problem. . . until he discovers he can't swim - after jumping into the pool. With his confidence shaken, Nate relies on his inner shark ("Sharks are fearless") to help him persevere. Daniel Duncan's illustrations provide an added layer of humor to this wonderful read for any shark-loving kid, any swimming kid and any kid afraid to swim. As a bonus, there are lots of shark facts at the end of the book!
Profile Image for Ryan.
4,456 reviews24 followers
April 1, 2019
Shark Nate - O just taught me that there is a shark that can use it’s fun to walk on land, so either evolution is moving fast, or I need to run faster. This book is really fun. Nate loves sharks and while he likes to play at being a shark. But the only real way to be a shark is to swim. So swimming lessons it is. This book is great for anyone endeavoring to take swimming lesson, who might be a little afraid of the water. Don’t worry, this book will help make it okay to go back in the water.
Profile Image for Johnell Dewitt.
30 reviews10 followers
September 10, 2017
I had the chance to see an advanced copy. The story and art are great. The humor is perfect for kids and grown-ups. Shark facts are scattered throughout the story. For the die-hard shark fan, there's also a section of additional shark facts in the back. The art is perfect for the text, and readers will enjoy the fun surprises the illustrator added in the details. It's a win for parents and educators--funny, educational, and easy to read.
Profile Image for Jami Gigot.
Author 6 books12 followers
October 4, 2017
We love Shark Nate-O! This is a hilarious tale of a shark obsessed boy who decides it's high time to get in the water and learn to swim. Swimming may not be as easy as Shark-Nate-O thought it would be, but he shows us that with a little perseverance and hard work, we can all achieve our dreams. The illustrations are a perfect complement to the witty and fun text. I'm looking forward to more books by these authors!
Profile Image for Derick Wilder.
30 reviews3 followers
October 6, 2017
The debut picture book by this talented author duo is a humorous tale about a young boy with a big dream! An ocean full of clever word play and shark references, combined with picture-perfect artwork, make it a story that begs to be read again and again. With a subtle theme of overcoming fears swirling beneath the surface and a list of fun shark facts, Shark-Nate-O is a wonderful blend of fact and fiction. I can’t wait to see what they dream up next!
Profile Image for Kate Narita.
Author 1 book28 followers
January 14, 2018
Love books that have characters with "can-do" attitudes. Nate-O chomps at his goal bit-by-bit till he reaches it, and in so doing surpasses his big brother! Fans of Abby Klein's Ready Freddy! Shark Tooth Tale will cheer for Shark Nate-O. There's also fantastic scientific back matter. If you're inspired to help sharks after reading Becky Cattie and Tara Leubbe's Shark Nate-O, be sure to check out Melissa Stewart's A Place for Fish.
Profile Image for Jeanette Bradley.
Author 10 books36 followers
January 23, 2018
Fun wordplay and sketchy illustrations combine in this “tail” of a shark-loving boy learning to swim. Nate loves to pretend to be a shark, but... he can’t swim. SHARK NATE-O follows his efforts to learn, until his eventual “fin-tastic” success. Nate pretends to be various types of sharks based on their behaviors and habitats. The author’s note at the end of the book goes into more detail, and will satisfy shark-loving readers. A fun riff on the themes of perseverance and overcoming fear.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 91 reviews

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