Tink is eleven and about to start sixth grade. Over the summer she grew a lot taller and had to start wearing a bra. Her best friend Jackie is still small, flat and, in Tink’s opinion, cute because of it. That’s not the only thing affecting their friendship. Jackie starts to hang with the popular kids and Tink knows she’s only invited because of Jackie. She’s not sure where she stands in the friendship, and that throws her off balance in other areas, making her second guess how she feels about a lot of things she took for granted before. She has to make decisions about whether she wants to change to fit in or find a different way that’s true to who she thinks she is.
Hundred Percent by Karen Romano Young captures the mixed-up feelings kids have when they feel themselves on the verge of growing up. Part of them wants to take comfort in doing the things they have always done. Part of them wants to act more grown up. Even figuring out what that means could be difficult.
Tink ponders issues that many girls her age are likely to be worried and confused about, including shifting friendships, budding interest in boys, insecurity about how they look compared to others in their class, and more. She also learns from Jackie’s home life, which is very different from her own. Jackie’s single mom is dating a man who has a son Jackie wants to date. Other kids talk about Jackie’s mom in unflattering ways, and Tink wonders what it all means.
Tink’s story is sure to resonate with kids ages 9 to 12, and the situations she faces should prompt lots to discuss in mother-daughter book clubs.
The publisher provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.