Kid’s Book Review: The Aquanaut

Kid’s Book Review: The Aquanaut

About the Book and Author

It is not very often we get the opportunity to review graphic novels but this one is a beauty with glossy vibrant pages and an important environmental message. It is perfect for readers who want to save the oceans and the creatures within from award winning author-illustrator Dan Santat.

Thanks to Scholastic for sending us a copy for Luka to read. Please scroll down to read his comments and see a sample of the amazing artwork with photographs of a few samples pages we have included.


Dan Santat is the Caldecott Medal–winning and New York Times bestselling author and illustrator of The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend, as well as the illustrator of many other picture books, including Crankenstein by Samantha Berger.

Book Review

This book is hilarious, inspiring and heart-warming

This book is about loss, sea life, ecology and family. The main character, Sophia lost her dad, Michel at sea. Her dad and her uncle, Paul are both marine biologists and now Sophia lives with her uncle but he is too busy for his work and has little time for her.

Five years later, a figure in a diving suit comes to Aqualand which was made by Michel and Paul. Inside the suits, there are four sea creatures (a hermit crab, two octopuses and a sea turtle) and they try to find a safe place.

However, Aqualand is now a theme park rather than a conservation area because the investors want to make money from it and unfortunately Paul needs this money for his research.

I have never read a book like this. The idea of an aquanaut controlled by sea creatures is very unique and extraordinary. I love the author’s imagination and creativity.

The story has lots of funny parts though the theme is serious and deep. I laughed my head off about the part when the squid vomited on Sophia’s teacher because he was forced to eat a turkey sandwich to
perform something brilliantly in the science fair.

Though I like to visit the aquarium and a dolphin show, it makes me wonder if humans have a right to enjoy it if that means it harms the sea creatures. I would rather prefer to create a safe environment for
them and we just view them without disturbing them too much.

The ending was very emotional but was a happy one overall. I also learnt good knowledge about sea creatures and I felt as if I were in the sea with them!

I would recommend this book to someone who likes sea creatures and who is interested in the environment and likes to read a good story!

I rate this book 9 out of 10 because there are so many parts to enjoy, learn and consider. This book is hilarious, inspiring and heart-warming!

Page Preview

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Alternatively, we suggest that you visit your local library and request to borrow a copy from a friendly librarian.

Whichever you choose, we hope you enjoy being part of your unique reading community – happy reading everyone!


Reviewer Profile

  • Name: Luka
  • Age: 9 years
  • Likes: sausage rolls, maths and anything to do with detectives
  • Dislikes: Mum getting cross with me and beef
  • Favourite Book: Dog Man by Dave Pilkey
  • Favourite Song: Asereje by Las Ketchup
  • Favourite Film: Around the World in Eighty Days