When a little girl finds an adorable robot in the woods, she presses a button and accidentally activates him for the first time. Now, she finally has a friend.
But the big, bad robots are coming to collect the little guy for nefarious purposes, and it's all up to a five-year-old armed only with a wrench and a fierce loyalty to her mechanical friend to save the day!
#1 New York Times Bestselling author Ben Hatke brings his signature sweetness to a simple, moving story about friendship and overcoming fears that will appeal to readers of all ages.
Hardcover, 144 pages
Published September 1st 2015 by First Second
Four stars: A beautifully illustrated story with minimal words that will appeal to all ages.
One night, a large truck trundles over a bridge, on its way to deliver robots. An unexpected bump jars open the door and out plunges a box into the river. The next day, a precocious five year old girl, armed with her tool belt and wrench runs across the robot in the woods. When she presses its button, the robot comes alive. Though the two can't communicate with words, they quickly develop their own language and become friends. Unfortunately for the new friends, danger is on the way. Once the factory discovers one of the robots is missing, a big bad robot is sent out to retrieve the little robot. Will the friendship be ruined when the robot is recaptured?
What I Liked:
- This was my first experience with a Ben Hatke book, and can say I was impressed. What sets this book apart are the gorgeous, detailed and colorful illustrations. The book has minimal words, and the dialogue that is present is simple and easy to understand. This is a book you can share with young readers because it is a read designed to use your imagination while making up dialogue based on the pictures. Both my four and six year old were enraptured with the book, and they both loved the pictures.
- As an adult, I found there were times when I wanted more explanation, but that didn't bother my kids. They had no trouble latching on to the story and understanding what was going on. This is a terrific read for preschoolers and for those who are just starting to read.
- The illustrations are not to be missed. They are full of color and detailed. It wasn't hard to make up your own words based on the picture. Definitely a very visual read, perfect for younger readers.
- The book is all about making a new friend, who is different. I liked the message behind the story, and I liked watching the friendship evolve. A lovely, upbeat book.
- The ending is sweet and cute, and it will make you smile.
And The Not So Much:
- There was a scene in the book when the girl and the robot run across a dead squirrel. I am not sure why the author included that in the book, it wasn't really relevant to the story, and I didn't like having to stop and discuss it with my kids.
- This is a bit of a spoiler.... there is a scene where the big bad robot who is out to hunt down the missing little robot, appears to eat a cat. Don't worry this is done off scene, there aren't pictures of it or anything, just some sounds that imply the cat is eaten. I thought this might disturb my kids, so I glossed over it. Thankfully, at the end, the cat is okay.
Little Robot is a delightful read for beginning readers, or readers of any age who like colorful illustrations and using their imagination. This is a book with minimal dialogue, instead it is all about coming up with your own words based on the pictures. It is easy to follow and enjoyable for kids of all ages.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own, and I was not compensated for this review.