Written at a time when adults used stories to teach children how to behave, this book bears little resemblance to the Disney movie. Unlike the naïve and happy-go-lucky puppet we all know, the “real” Pinocchio is just plain bad. He even kills the cricket in the fourth chapter. Don’t be alarmed, the cricket will come back, and after many trials and sufferings Pinocchio learns his lesson. He truly earns his boyhood (unlike Disney’s character) after sincerely repenting, seeking out and saving his father Geppetto, and then supporting his aged father with hard work. Innocenti’s illustrations are exquisite, and children should find this original version of the story quite substantial.
Jennifer Minicus lives in Ridgewood, NJ. Her love for the formation of young people inspired her interest in children’s literature.