Written and illustrated by Bob Shea
Balzer + Bray, 2011
$16.99, ages 3-6, 40 pages
Shark doesn't have a nervous bone (er, piece of cartilage) in his body, but could there be one teeny tiny thing that rattles him?
Get ready for giggles. Shea is back with another fun read-aloud, this time about a big-talking shark who tries to convince a little fish and crab that nothing can scare him.
Without wasting a page, Shark swims up to readers on the first spread, catches their eyes like a happy emoticon and declares: 1) He's a shark and 2) He's totally awesome.
After all, he is big and broad. And just look at that pointy-tooth grin.
Not allergy shots. (No, that's not a tear dripping down his right eye. Just seasonal allergies.)
Not scary movies. (No, he isn't hiding behind his bucket of popcorn. It so happens he likes to hold it in front of his face.)
Not dinosaurs. (Even if they were still around.)
But how about a big squid, the dark or a bear? ask his little friends.
Not even those things, Shark says. In fact, once those things know what kind of creature he is, they cower and gasp.
"Oh my goodness! A totally awesome shark!" yells the dark (a page all in black) in big white letters.
But suppose one of these things was disguised as a spider or was thinking about a spider or was reading a book about spiders?
You know, the creepy ones?
Okay, so Shark isn't keen on spiders. But don't believe what the fish and crab are saying.
It isn't that he's scared of them.
Of course not. He's just smart enough to know when to swim away as fast as he can.
A hoot from start to finish, this is Shea at his best and a perfect book for fans of Kevin Sherry's I'm the Biggest Thing in the Ocean.
After one read, kids will be clamoring to hear it again and might just ask for their own stuffed shark (for all those time they're not scared either).