The Ninja Who Wanted to Be Noticed

Book - 2009
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Although ninjas should be silent and use stealth, Wink finds his enthusiasm gets him into trouble with his teacher until he finds the perfect way to express both traits.
Publisher: New York : Viking, [2009]
Copyright Date: ©2009
ISBN: 9780670010929
Branch Call Number: PHI
Characteristics: [32] pages : color illustrations.


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ChristchurchLib Jul 27, 2015

In this new take on the "be yourself" theme, boisterous Wink eagerly begins his training at a school for young ninjas, only to discover that being stealthy and invisible goes against his grain. He tries, but he just can't bring himself to blend in -- he wants to be noticed. After many failures and a chance meeting with a member of a circus troupe, Wink finally finds his true calling (hint: it involves juggling fire sticks while balancing on a bamboo pole). Bold, textured collage illustrations vault this gleeful, exuberant tale over the top.

Picture books newsletter July 2015

Jun 23, 2015

Wink really wants to be good at ninja school, but he also craves attention. He needs to find his own path! I appreciated how even though this is a story about being yourself, it's not a story about rebellion and rejection. Wink doesn't disrespect his ninja school master, his master ends up pleased that Wink has figured himself out, and it's Wink's grandmother's advice that helps him finds his way.

(The second Wink book loses some of that respect, as the ninja school master is presented in a more stereotyped way, like a generic "Asian wise man" from a kung fu movie - and Wink reacts to his sayings with disdain.)


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Aug 15, 2011

K-Gr 3-Ninjas are supposed to be silent and stealthy. This creates problems for Wink, a ninja in training who has a flamboyant streak. The desire to be in the spotlight causes Master Zutsu to send him home several times with admonishments that read like proverbs: "The loudest cricket is the first to be caught" and "The blossom that flaunts its color is soon plucked." Wink's grandmother tries to cheer him up and shares a few proverbial sayings of her own, including "Time spent laughing is time well spent" and "Sometimes a worry must rest." After a particularly disastrous outing to the panda pen at the zoo, Wink encounters a boy practicing acrobatic tricks and realizes that he has found his special talent. This charming story ends with Master Zutsu and Grandmother receiving tickets to the Lucky Dragon Circus. After watching Wink, aka "the Nimble Ninja," perform, Grandmother remarks, "Your smile has come home." Phillipps's debut is an auspicious one. The story's oft-told message of acceptance has been invigorated with originality and humor. The collage-style illustrations often appear to have a three-dimensional effect and Wink practically bounds off the pages with barely contained energy. The rich colors and textures contribute to the setting and complement the action nicely. This flashy picture book is sure to appeal to a wide audience.-Maura Bresnahan, High Plain Elementary School, Andover, MA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc.

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