Book Review “The Shark King”

Author: R. Kikuo Johnson
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: Toon Books
Release Date: April 10, 2012

Our Score: 2.5 out of 5 stars

When it comes to sharks, the minute I see the word on a book or any format I can’t help but pick it up. “The Shark King” is an interesting little title. The story is a simple but it’s message might be a little too much for its aimed target of grades 2-3. The book is setup as an easy-to-read comic and does contains some intriguing illustrations. I give R. Kikuo Johnson credit for creating these characters and really bringing the spirit of Hawaii to the pages.

The story of “The Shark King” takes place in the islands of Hawaii and introduces us to Nanaue. After his mother falls in love with a man, who turns out to be The Shark King, Nanaue is born with a unique yearning. He doesn’t know that his father is the king of the sea but he has this urge to be in the water and a very big appetite for the ocean. Since Nanaue is different, he ends up trying to find out who his truly is.

If you are aware of the story of the Shark King, you know that this was obviously a very kid friendly adaption of it. I enjoyed the simplicity of the book and its illustrations but I couldn’t really get over the fact that the boy had a pair of teeth in his back, kind of put me off. Either way, kids might still enjoy this book with is a quick read but not for me.

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