Invisible Inkling

by Emily Jenkins and Harry Bliss

Nine-year-old Hank discovers an invisible furry creature in his parents’ ice... read more

Nine-year-old Hank discovers an invisible furry creature in his parents’ ice cream store—just days after his best friend moves away. “Inkling” soon takes up residence in Hank’s room and becomes Hank’s confidante, helping him navigate the start of fourth grade without a best friend and with a bully named Bruno making life miserable. There’s a lot of humor in this engaging novel in which Inkling, while invisible, is far from imaginary. Inkling discovers the cheesy goodness of pizza, for example, but he needs squash for long-term sustenance. No one in Hank’s family eats squash, making for a comical—and slightly alarming—scene in a natural foods store. Hank’s frustration at how the adults around him respond to the bullying situation is realistic, as is his sense of satisfaction when Inkling bites Bruno. And the complexity of Hank’s feelings when he exploits his knowledge of Bruno’s difficult home life helps balance the presence of the bully-has-it-hard-at-home stereotype. But it’s Hank’s violation of Inkling’s trust that proves to be his biggest challenge in this entertaining story about the start of a beautiful friendship. (Ages 7–10)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2012

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