Paul Geraghty was born in South Africa, but now lives in London. His books have very strong links to the natural world and his illustrations of animals in particular and their natural habitats are outstanding. The viewer feels immediately transported to that location. His childhood in South Africa has also influenced his books as he says in the interviews and filmclips on You Tube.
I always read Solo to my Year 2 students as part of a unit of enquiry on emperor penguins and I still get choked up when Floe leaves Solo on the ice and goes back to the sea, and I know
what happens. It is because of the horrified looks on the children's faces when this happens. They become very animated and I always stop to let them talk and suggest solutions to the problem. When we then read to the end of the book you can hear a pin drop in the room!
Tortuga is also popular. Whenever it is on display with or without the accompanying toy tortoise it is quickly borrowed. It is an adventure story with
lots to say about the environment and survival.
Paul has also illustrated some of John Bush's picture books. He is also a South African and writes about the animals native to there. He has a wonderful website.