Luann's Reviews > Ugly Fish

Ugly Fish by Kara LaReau
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's review
Jul 20, 2008

liked it
bookshelves: gr-author, fish-story, picture-book, 2010
Read on September 13, 2010

** spoiler alert ** Ugly Fish is ugly, and big, and mean. He doesn't like to share his tank, his driftwood tunnel, or his briny flakes. So when new fish appear in his tank, well, he eats them. But after a while he gets lonely. So he tries to be friends with the next new fish to appear in his tank.

On the surface, I really like this story. It's just slightly wacky with interesting, quirky illustrations that go well with the story. But as a story designed to teach a lesson about childhood bullying, I don't think it really works. I don't think that the outcome with Shiny Fish would have been any different if Ugly Fish himself had been nicer. Unless he had been nice to some smaller fish and they had worked together when Shiny Fish came along? Ugly Fish did get what he deserved, but Teensy Fish, Kissy Fish, Stripy Fish and Spotty Fish came to the same end and that wasn't what they deserved at all. Or maybe I'm thinking about this too much? As I said, on the surface, I really do like this story and its illustrations. It's when I start to think deeper about what the story is trying to teach that I hit some problems.

And, as an adult reader, I want to know about this fish tank owner who keeps putting new fish in with Ugly Fish - again and again!

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