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Reviewed by Rosie Malezer for Readers' Favorite
I'm Not Afraid by Lee Ann Mancini and Dan Sharp is a wonderfully illustrated children’s book set in the Underwater Amusement Park. When Rachel the octopus asks her best friend, Susie the shark, if they can go on the Whale-Back Roller Coaster, Susie makes many excuses as to why they shouldn’t. Susie asks if they could try a different ride, then she decides that she wants to eat first. After they eat and their food settles, Susie decides to go and play some games. They both play and win many toy prizes which filled their arms, giving Susie yet another reason not to ride on the Whale-Back Roller Coaster. When Rachel finds a locker to store the toy prizes, Susie gives another excuse that she has to use the bathroom and then ring her mom, insisting that she is not afraid to ride the roller coaster. While talking to her mother on the phone, Susie’s mom tells her that it is all right not to be afraid and to say a prayer if she gets scared. Finally, Susie agrees to go on the roller coaster with Rachel.
The illustrations throughout I’m Not Afraid are fun and full of colour which fills every page of the story. Lee Ann Mancini and Dan Sharp present an incredible tale of friendship, with Susie being too scared to admit her fears, but with Rachel and Susie’s mother’s help, she learns that she can conquer her fears with prayer by reaching out to Jesus.