Bewitched Kids Corner {1} Captain McFinn and Friends

Posted 6 July, 2012 by Heather in Blog, Heather, Heather Book Review / 15 Comments

Happy Friday, and welcome to the first installment of a new monthly feature here where we review Children’s books.

The Legend of Captain McFinn and Friends

Created by Phyllis Cafaro
Illustration by Mada Design, Inc.
Amazon / Website / Indiebound
24 pages (Hardcover and Paperback)
Published January 2012

Captain McFinn was once one of the biggest bullies on Sand Dusty Reef, but when he meets the Undersea Friends, he learns that being a friend is always better than being a bully. Come along with Captain McFinn and Friends and see how McFinn, the bully, became Captain McFinn the leader and protector of Sand Dusty Reef.

When a group of friendly fish find a shipwreck and decide to make it into a clubhouse, three mean fish lead by “The Meanest One of Them All”–a reef shark named McFinn–get jealous and build a clubhouse of their own out of garbage instead of making friends with the other fish. But once they bullies see how much fun the nice, friendly fish are having decorating their space, they decide to stop picking on each other and turn their negative attention on the innocent fish looking for a few shells to spruce up their shipwreck. And that’s when you see what all of the fish–both good and bad–are really made of, and who will stick with you through thick and thin.

The Legend of Captain McFinn and Friends follows the transformation of the shark McFinn from nasty bully with no real friends, just other mean fish who are scared of him hanging around, to an ocean dweller that knows what true friendship is. This story teaches kids about treating others with respect and kindness while working together towards a goal. The main message of this book is very anti-bullying, and that is something that needs to be reinforced in this day and age, to children of all ages (and a lot of adults too!).


Captain McFinn and Friends Meet Coral Rose

Created by Phyllis Cafaro
Illustration by Mada Design, Inc.
Amazon / Website / Indiebound
24 pages (Hardcover and Paperback)
Published February 2012

Captain McFinn and Friends go on an adventure of discovery when they stumble upon a new ocean paradise where they meet their newest friend, Princess Coral Rose–The Princess Between the TIdes

In Captain McFinn and Friends Meet Coral Rose, the Undersea Friends encounter the destruction of coral reefs and the plundering of helpless fish by humans. When they find a treasure chest in their abandoned shipwreck clubhouse, the friends find a pink key that opens a magical doorway leading them to a coral reef. Once they swim through the doorway, they meet a beautiful girl whose sole task is to heal and protect the reefs and fish around the world. Using some quick thinking, McFinn is able to scare off some humans who are destroying the reef and taking fish using plastic bags.

The main message of this installment is the conservation of the ocean’s ecosystem and how we, as humans, are often doing more to hurt the oceans than to help them.

Captain McFinn and Friends Come Along with the Friend-Ship Band CD


This CD features 14 songs that are great for kids to sing along to while still being great entertainment for parents too.


The mission of the Captain McFinn series is as follows from their website.

Once the biggest bully on Sand Dusty reef, McFinn, a blacktip reef shark, renounced his bullying ways when the Undersea Friends showed him the virtues of helping and caring for others. The vision of Captain McFinn and Friends is to inspire children to make a difference by doing their very best. Each adventure will show that by working together and taking responsibility for our actions and our environment, we can make the world a better place to live in, one child (and fish) at a time.

And I couldn’t agree more with this statement!

The Captain McFinn series is great for a broad age range of young children. My son is three years old, and he really enjoyed sitting down and reading the books with me. The illustrations are very colorful and vivid, with the undersea creatures drawn very realistically without being too scary for young children. My son is going through a phase right now where he wants to watch the movie Finding Nemo a lot, so this series couldn’t have come at a more perfect time. He gets to learn about bullying before he starts preschool while learning more about fish, which he adores right now.

There is a handy illustrated glossary at the beginning of each book, naming each of the characters for easy reference. I really love “Fun Finn Facts” page at the end of each book, which gives more information on the fish, flora, and fauna that were touched on in the book. I highly recommend these books to anyone who has pre-K to younger-grade school aged kids because they will hold their interest while teaching them valuable lessons about bullying, friendship, and saving the environment.

**Copies of the books and CD provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review**


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I'm a PhD chemist who loves sarcasm, music, and books-paranormal, mystery, thriller, suspense, horror, and romance. Most of my free time is spent at the martial arts studio these days--whether practicing Combat Hapkido or reading books while watching my son's Taekwondo classes, or even working up a sweat with Kickboxing for fun. Goodreads

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15 Responses to “Bewitched Kids Corner {1} Captain McFinn and Friends”

  1. Great idea for a feature! Kids’ books (MG and under) don’t get nearly enough promotion via blogs (not that I read, anyway) and there are some really excellent stories out there. My neighbor’s little boy adores sharks and the sea–I think I’ll have to recommend this series to her!
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    Heather 7/6/2012

    I’m glad you like this, Mary. Since Pushy, Kristen, and I all have at least one kid (and I two nephew’s under five), we thought it would be a fun and great thing to review some kids books once a month. And I got some great books at BEA that my son absolutely adores, so that will be featured in August’s post. Look for it the first Friday of every month!
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  2. Awwww, this is a totally cute idea to feature kids books! I always feel bad for my little cousins when they want books to read and I don’t know any, so I love seeing books for younger audiences as well! :’) I love the whole Captain McFinn idea and how it talks about the conservation of the ocean and stuff as an underling message — talk about sneaky-smart! 😉

    Adore these kids reviews, Heather! <3
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    Heather 7/6/2012

    I’m always a bit out of the loop when it comes to kids books too. My son always picks out books with Thomas the Tank Engine or trains in general, so it was nice to get some other books to try out on him when I was at BEA last month. Luckily, he will sit down and read with me now that he’s three, and he really enjoys most books!

    Pushy, Kristen, and I are looking forward to sharing Kid’s books with everyone on the first Friday of each month!
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  3. How incredibly cute! I love this new feature! and I also know that my youngest would have a ton of fun with these books! I will definitely have to show them to him 🙂
    Thanks so much for another wonderful feature, we’ll be looking forward to them!!!
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    Heather 7/8/2012

    Thanks, Margie! We look forward to sharing the books that our kids like with everyone in a monthly post.
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  4. I love that there’s an illustrated glossary! I remember as a kid I LOVED books that had glossary’s. I’m not sure why… I just did. I love the illustrations on the covers of these too. I think my daughter might really enjoy these books. So glad you guys are reviewing some childrens books! Seems like I get an occasional few to review, but not too many… and I read to my kids every day so more suggestions are always nice!
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    Heather 7/8/2012

    The colors in these books are really vibrant, and the glossary spells every character out so you know who’s who. It’s great!
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