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Invisible Inkling

by Emily Jenkins
Illustrated by Harry Bliss

Published by Balzer + Bray / HarperCollins, 2011
153 pages
ISBN: trade 978𢠢61802201

Ages 7-10

Nine-year-old Hank discovers an invisible furry creature in his parents ice cream store梛ust days after his best friend moves away. 揑nkling soon takes up residence in Hank抯 room and becomes Hank抯 confidante, helping him navigate the start of fourth grade without a best friend and with a bully named Bruno making life miserable. There抯 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抯 family eats squash, making for a comical梐nd slightly alarming梥cene in a natural foods store. Hank抯 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抯 feelings when he exploits his knowledge of Bruno抯 difficult home life helps balance the presence of the bully-has-it-hard-at-home stereotype. But it抯 Hank抯 violation of Inkling抯 trust that proves to be his biggest challenge in this entertaining story about the start of a beautiful friendship.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

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