Thanks to First Second Books for providing a review copy and a giveaway for Ben Hatke's latest title, Little Robot, due out this coming Tuesday (09/01/2015)! Read on for my honest review, and remember to check the rest of the blog tour stops along the way for more reviews and chances to win!
About the Book
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.
Visit the publisher's page to view excerpts and find links to purchase the book.
About the Author
Ben Hatke is the author and illustrator of the New York Times bestselling Zita the Spacegirl graphic novel trilogy and the picture book Julia's House for Lost Creatures. He lives and works in the Shenandoah Valley with his wife and their boisterous pack of daughters. His latest book is Little Robot.
Even if you've never read a Ben Hatke book or graphic novel before, you're in for a treat with Little Robot. Hatke's drawing and storytelling style is deceptively simple; at first glance it doesn't seem like there's much going on--muted color palette, subtle lines, mostly wordless panels. But as you turn the pages, a deeper appreciation takes root as you get to know the characters and their quirks.
A lonesome little girl finds a robot after it literally falls off a truck. Unpacking the Little Robot, she tinkers with it a bit as it seems unsteady and unsure. After parking the little robot in a junkyard car overnight, she returns the next day for adventures and play. Little Robot goes along with her, and for a while things are great--but then a big, mean robot from the warehouse is sent to retrieve the missing unit. As if that weren't enough to deal with, Little Robot doesn't seem to understand the difference between "alive" and "not alive", and starts to look for things that are a little more like him, and a lot less like his new friend.
Hatke deftly illustrates emotion, not just on the part of the little girl--her elation at finding a companion, the enthusiasm she puts into fixing things with her tools (she wears them on a handy utility belt), and her dismay when her new pal seems less interested in her and more interested in an abandoned pickup truck they find. He also infuses personality into everything from a beat up old truck to a perky transistor radio, and admirably does so with an economy of words. Little Robot and various other androids that appear later in the book show varying degrees of sentience, and the interplay between them makes for some funny, but also touching, scenes. Tension builds when Little Robot, Little Girl, and Big Robot's objectives clash and result in some unexpected twists. A few action sequences also liven up the plot, and the little girl has to rely on her wits and mechanical know-how to get out of a tight spot.
Aside from presenting us with spirited, playful art and a compelling tale, Hatke takes a "traditionally" boy topic (technology) and turns it on its ear with a non-white female character as the protagonist, doing so without losing the everyman (or everywoman?) appeal of a darned good yarn.
Blog Tour Schedule
Read Now Sleep Later, 8/31 http://www.readnowsleeplater.org/
Teen Lit Rocks, 9/1 http://teenlitrocks.com/
Cherry Blossoms and Maple Syrup, 9/2 https://innocencewalker.wordpress.com/
Bibliophilia, Please, 9/3 http://www.bibliophiliaplease.com/
The Book Monsters, 9/4 http://thebookmonsters.com/
Fly to Fiction, 9/5 http://flytofiction.blogspot.com/
Bumbles & Fairy Tales, 9/6 http://bumblesandfairytales.blogspot.com/
Stacked Books, 9/7 http://stackedbooks.org/
Ex Libris Kate, 9/8 http://exlibriskate.com/
The Book Rat, 9/9 http://www.thebookrat.com/
Working for the Mandroid, 9/10 http://www.workingforthemandroid.com/
Heise Reads, 9/11 http://www.heisereads.com/
The Hiding Spot, 9/12 http://thehidingspot.blogspot.com/
Fleen, 9/13 http://fleen.com/
Cuddlebuggery, 9/14 http://cuddlebuggery.com/
Win Little Robot by Ben Hatke, prize provided by the publisher, First Second Books. Just enter with the Rafflecopter widget below!
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