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Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite
Farkle Shark, You Are Not Stupid by Rita Emmett and Irina Bulgaru is an adorable story which speaks about bullying and feeling stupid. Farkle Shark is hiding from his big sister because she always corrects the goofy sayings he uses. She always criticizes him and today she wants to know why he is so sad. He says he is sad because he thinks he is stupid - he is the only one in his class who cannot climb trees. She tries to console him by writing on her underwater board: ‘Everybody is smart about something BUT nobody is smart about everything.’ Sparkle Shark takes Farkle Shark close to the top so that their fins will scare the swimmers. Farkle Shark shows his sister Big Bully Boy who has told everyone that he is stupid. What does Sparkle Shark do that changes everything for Farkle Shark?
The story has some good lessons for young readers and will make them understand that it is not possible for everyone to do everything in life, and each person has their own strengths and weaknesses. The story also touches on the topic of bullying. The illustrations do justice to the author’s words and give clarity to her thoughts and expressions. It is a good bedtime storybook and the life lessons make it excellent for read aloud sessions in classrooms and school libraries. The story is fun and filled with humor, and children will love both Farkle Shark and Sparkle Shark and the lessons they teach through their story.