The Trouble with Tink

Book review by
Matt Berman, Common Sense Media
The Trouble with Tink Book Poster Image
Tinker Bell tale OK for kids, boring for adults.

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The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Violence & Scariness
Language

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that there's nothing to be concerned about here, other than perhaps yet another depiction of girls who look like Barbie.

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What's the story?

Tinker Bell, whose talent is repairing pots and pans, loses her hammer while playing a game of tag. After looking all over for it, she tries to do her work with other types of hammers, but the result is a mess. The rumor spreads among the fairies that she has lost her talent.

She does actually have a spare. The problem is that she left it in the Lost Boys' home, and she has had a falling out with Peter over the arrival of Wendy. With her feelings hurt she is too reluctant to encounter Peter again to retrieve it. But if she doesn't, she may lose her position within the fairy community.

Is it any good?

To adults, this book about Tinker Bell and her lost hammer is insipid pap -- a bland, dull story about a silly, contrived problem with an obvious solution. It's made worse by the typically Disneyfied depictions of Tinker Bell as Barbie with wings -- pouty lips, pencil-thin eyebrows, wasp waist, giant doe eyes, and a backless, strapless outfit that must be held up by fairy dust.

Kids will enjoy it, especially those with fairy obsessions, and it's only harmful with its gender stereotyping. It even has some good (if heavy-handed) messages about friendship and communication. It's not badly written as these things go. Let your kids have it -- just hope they don't want you to read it to them.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why Tink is so reluctant to talk to Peter. How might talking to him have avoided a lot of problems? What could she have said? What did she assume that turned out not to be true? How is Terence a better friend to her than she is to Peter? Also, do any real girls ever look like Tink?

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