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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
“A bully is really a friend in need.” Sad, when you think of it. But don’t worry. The K-9 bully elves of the North Pole know how to set things right. They know how to teach each and every one of us to be “A B C Assertive Bold Confident”. We don’t need to fight to stand up for our rights. We need to be ourselves, be proud of who we are, and show others that we are worthy of being our own unique selves. We are all different. The K-9 bully elves have an interesting exercise to help us overcome the stigma of being bullied. Hold a mirror and look into it and say words that demonstrate your self-confidence, like: “Dear mirror, dear mirror,/ what do I see?/ A confident child – yes, it’s me!”
Bullying is a global issue. And it doesn’t begin and end in childhood, though, in many ways, perhaps that’s where it hurts the most. Victoria Ann Devine’s picture book story, Sparky’s Bully Workshop: A Reason to Rhyme, is full of rhyming good advice on how to stand up to a bully without becoming aggressive and a bully yourself. Taking the power of compassionate dogs, creating a workshop environment with a K-9 bully team leader, these North Pole anti-bully agents will help young readers build self-confidence, self-esteem and give them the assertive, bold, and confident power to stand up to bullies in a non-aggressive manner. The rhyming verses and colorful illustrations help make this a fun read as well as being positively educational.