Showing and Sharing: Clark the Shark Dares to Share by Bruce Hale
CLARK THE SHARK LOVES SCHOOL!
BUT SOMETIMES CLARK GETS A LITTLE MIXED UP!
ONE MORNING MRS. INKYDINK TELLS CLARK'S CLASS "TIME FOR SHOW AND SHARE!"
Clark is one of those students who has enthusiasm to spare. He throws himself completely into whatever he's doing, snout and fin. If it's time to share, he's ready to show everyone everything he's got. Trouble is, Clark is somewhat short in the social skills department. To him sharing means telling everything on his mind and showing off whatever he can do.
When Bonny Bonefish plays the class a song she's learned, Clark launches into his Funky Shark Dance, completely upstaging Bonny and tromping on not a few fins in the process. Mrs. Inkydink is not pleased.
"BUT I WAS SHARING TOO!" SAID CLARK.
"SHARING IS CARING," SAID MRS. INKYDINK. "EVERYONE MUST WAIT THEIR TURN!"
Clark thinks he's got the message, but when Amanda Eelwiggle wins the prize of a scrumptious pie in the Reading-Roundup, Clark moves in, all to ready to SHARE the heck out of Amanda's treat.
Mrs. Inkydink points out sternly that Amanda gets to choose the one to share her prize. This stuff gets confusing, muses Clark,
At recess the guys get into a game of sea hockey, where Clark shares his skills too much; in fact, he's a total puck-hog. The guys on his side are disgusted.
"A WIN'S NOT A WIN UNLESS WE ALL GET TO PLAY!"
After school Clark goes to play their favorite action figures game, Sea Wars, at Joey Mackerel's house. Clark goes straight for Joey's brand-new figure:
"WOW! DARTH WADER!"
But Joey wants to be Darth Wader. He offers his next best action figure, Fluke Sea Walker. But when Joey goes for snacks, Clark appropriates Darth Wader. It must be my turn now! he says to himself.
WHAM! KAPOW! Clark means for Darth Wader to demolish Fluke, but Darth Wader is the one who's now history. Oops!
"THAT'S NOT SHARING! THAT'S TAKE AND BREAK!!!!" shouts Joey.
Clark is confused. Wasn't he taking turns? Isn't that the rule?
It's not until he gets home and finds his baby brother "sharing" his favorite ball cap by chewing a hole in the bill, that Clark finally gets why Joey Mackerel was so mad. Sharing means remembering that he's not the only fish in the sea--remembering to look at sharing from the other's point of view, in Bruce Hale's latest Clark story, Clark the Shark Dares to Share (HarperCollins, 2013). Clark is a good-natured blunderbuss of a great white shark, well-meaning, but not necessarily the most empathetic of sea critters.
As in his first book, Clark the Shark, (read review here) Hale offers some deep-sea wordplay and has his good-hearted shark contrive some clever rhymes to remind himself of the rules of behavior, and Guy Francis' comic illustrations, offering plenty of visual under-the-sea puns and appealing schoolkids of the deep, make these stories a lot of fishy fun.