Tuesday 8 July 2014

The Tinklers Three — the perfect pet

The Tinklers Three — the perfect pet by M.C.Badger and illustrated by Jon Davis (Hardie Grant Egmont)
ISBN 978 1 7429 7627 3
PB RRP $12.95
Reviewed by Nean McKenzie

The fourth in a series about the Tinkler family, this story follows on from 'A very good idea,' 'The coolest pool' and 'An excellent invention'. The latest book deals with the Tinkler children getting a pet, which was never going to happen in a predictable, normal way. As one of the children says, 'These pets are OK for other people … but we are the Tinklers and we need something different.'

The Tinkler family consists of Mila, the oldest girl, Turtle the youngest and in between is a boy Marcus, who we are told early on, is 'not that normal either'. In fact as their parents are away at the circus, this is a very unconventional family, where the kids do exactly what they want. The only time this is a problem, is when they run into a 'Worried Adult', but the kids have devised their own methods of dealing with this.  

The Tinkler children have different ideas about what they want as a pet,  and none of them are very practical. Turtle wants a camel and Mila hilariously tries a pet teenager for a while (which turns out to be quite expensive). It is only when they run into the Splatleys, the family they are not friends with who live in a nearby flat, that a solution to the pet dilemma presents itself. Everyone is happy — Marcus and his sisters get a dog to play with, and the dog doesn't have to play Ludo with the Splatleys every night.

As chapter book for early readers, this quirky little story is fun to read. Imaginative illustrations appear at least every couple of pages and interesting words are written in different fonts and designs, further breaking up the text. It's bright and quick paced and the humour is very effective. Also good for reading out loud, this book would be suitable for readers aged six and up. 

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