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How the Borks Became


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About the Author

Jonathan Emmett has written over 60 books for children including Bringing Down the Moon, Someone Bigger and The Princess and the Pig. He developed his skills as a writer and illustrator while studying and working as an architect but left architecture to become a children's author in 1995. His work has been translated into over 30 different languages and has won several awards both in the UK and abroad including the Red House Children's Book Award for Pigs Might Fly and the STEAM Children's Book Prize for How the Borks Became: An Adventure in Evolution. You can find out more about Jonathan and his books at his web site scribblestreet.co.uk and follow him on Twitter at @scribblestreet. Jonathan lives in Nottingham.

An author as well as an artist, Elys Dolan grew up in Sussex, went to Cambridge School of Art, and lives in Cambridge. Her own books include Weasels and Nuts in Space, and her Mr Bunny's Chocolate Factory won Best Laugh Out Loud Picture Book in the 2019 Lollies. She lives in Cambridge.


"An amazing find! An easy to understand, hilarious and devastating book about evolution! The illustrations of the little Borklings discovering they need fur, longer necks, camouflage... I'm dying. I love it."

* Goodreads *

"A clever little lesson on natural selection through a story of the borks. Love love love. It's so difficult to find good children's books but one that teaches too? Rare!"

* Goodreads *

"Now in paperback, a funny, accessible introduction to the concept of evolution and natural selection Dolan's pictures are a riot, rich in visual humour."

-- Fiona Noble * The Bookseller *

"... bizarre, Seussian (yet strangely sensible)"

-- Anna McKerrow * Book Trust, What To Read After Dr Seuss *

"In this delightful and instructive picturebook (dedicated by the author to Charles Darwin) Jonathan Emmett has written his own origin of the species... the species here being the Bork. You might not have heard of Borks before but fear not, Jonathan is an expert....The story of the evolution of the Borks is skillfully told in rhyme which makes it great to read out loud. Not only will children be entertained by the story of the Borks but they will also learn about evolution of creatures (and natural selection) which will make it a useful book to share in the classroom. Elys Dolan's artwork perfectly compliments Jonathan's text. It's bright and eyecatching, and gives the reader lots to look our for on each spread."

* An Awfully Big Blog Spot *

"If you are looking for a book that is both fun to read and educational, you have found it here! The Borks are a likeable animal and their evolution and challenges are explained in an entertaining and educational way ... The big, colourful pictures bring the science to life and telling the tale through rhyme makes it accessible and fun to read. You can't fault a book that makes challenge science accessible to even the youngest minds!"

* Fathers Reading Every Day *

"Evolution can be a difficult concept to explain to children, but this amusing picture book presents it beautifully. Reminiscent of Dr Seuss books, it's a fantastically funny tale with wonderfully vibrant illustrations."

* Booktrust - Books we Love *

"What an utterly brilliant way to describe evolution. Full of imagination, cleverness, detail and fun. Highly recommended!"

* Read it, Daddy! *

"The combination of Emmett's brilliant, quirky rhyming narrative and Elys Dolan's wonderfully witty, whimsical illustrations is an enormously enjoyable amalgam of science and storytelling, which offers a perfect starting point for the KS2 evolution topic"

* Red Reading Hub *

"Very much enjoying How the Borks Became by @scribblestreet and @ElysDolan! Seuss vibes and a fab way to introduce ideas of evolution and natural selection to children."

* Teach Primary *

"A fab introduction to the concept of evolution. It's rhyming text and bright fun illustrations have really grabbed her attention. It's been a good way to introduce ideas of difference to her."

* Let Them be Small *
"An accessible and entertaining way to introduce the concept of evolution and natural selection, told through amusing verse ... Elys Dolan's colourful illustrations are full of fun." * Parents in Touch *

"A funny, accessible introduction to the concept of evolution and natural selection, using the fantastical creature of the Planet Charlebob. Dolan's pictures are a riot."

-- Fiona Noble * The Bookseller *

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