You Are What You Eat

Today I have a book about an ink splotch that  absolutely epitomizes the saying “You are what you eat.”  This book is so creative and full of great messages for kids.  I love an original concept in kid lit and this story delivers.

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Title: Inklingyou are what you eat inkling

Author: Kenneth Oppel

Target: Grades 3-6

Series: No

What this book is about:

When a small splash of ink manages to get itself free from a sketchbook, no one has any idea what it has the capacity to become.  It finds itself in the Rylance household, a place where a mother’s death has caused great pain for its inhabitants including Ethan.  Ethan discovers Inkling when his drawings and textbooks start showing up blank because Inkling feeds on actual ink.  Interestingly, Inkling absorbs not only the ink itself but also the ideas expressed.  And as Inkling’s appetite grows, so does his knowledge and ideas.

Why I love this book:

  • I just loved the concept of this story.  The idea of an ink blot that becomes a sentient being is powerful.  He needs a steady diet of good quality content in order to develop into a caring and empathetic creature.  Too much garbage and he gets hyped up.  Sound familiar?
  • I felt for Ethan and kids will really appreciate his struggles on how much to use Inkling for his own gain.  Ethan is a terrible artist and when he gets Inkling to do the illustrations for a school project, he knows it is cheating.  As he shifts from simply using Inkling to getting Inkling to teach him how to draw, Ethan feels better and more proud of the work he is turning in.  
  • The novel does have illustrations, but I think they could have been more plentiful.  It almost felt like the folks putting this book together couldn’t quite decide if it would be an illustrated novel or not, so they kind of got caught in the middle for a mixed effect.

Who this book is for:

This book reminded me in a loose way of Sunny Side Up or Hey, Kiddo, so kids who enjoyed those will like this one.  This book saves the biggest action sequence until the end, so kids have to be patient readers.

Final thoughts:

I appreciate finding original concepts in stories and this one does not disappoint.  Some days I wish I had my own inkling to write all my reviews for me!

To purchase this book:

Click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Inkling.  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost to you.  Thank you for your support.