I have to admit that I wrote this review to contend with Mrs. Burritt's review below me. The problem she has with this book and this series in general is that they are 'harsh'; to which I respond, yes, of course they are, because they are written for older readers than the regular picture book series. The reason why most if not all good stories are interesting are because there are conflicts involved, obstacles to be overcome by our protagonists. As for Brother Bear thinking violent thoughts towards Ferdy, he's a kid, he's never going to seriously consider taking a knife to Ferdy (although seeing how rude and snobbish Ferdy is it's very easy to sympathise with Brother), Brother Bear isn't perfect, that's what makes him interesting and easy to relate to.
Ultimately the book is good and a fairly realistic portrayal of Kids and their attitudes towards intellectuals, if that's 'harsh' then so be it.