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LITTLE ROBOT by Ben Hatke Kirkus Star


by Ben Hatke ; illustrated by Ben Hatke

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-62672-080-0
Publisher: First Second

Possibilities abound for a small, brown-skinned girl with time, a tool belt, and a penchant for urban adventure.

From the imaginative creator of Zita the Spacegirl comes this techy take on a warm friendship born in a junkyard. The short, round-faced protagonist escapes from a window of her trailer home clad only in a white nightshirt and heads for a neighbor’s swingset, then to the junkyard—her daily routine, apparently. Unfettered and unsupervised by adults (or other humans), the protagonist dons her tool belt and soon discovers a little broken blue robot that has lost its way. Never at a loss for how to fix any machine, she tinkers with the robot, and suddenly, she has a running buddy. Together, they explore frogs, cats, sunsets, and more. But when the factory misses Little Robot and sends a large, scary-looking yellow robot to retrieve it, the main character needs more than a wrench to save her new friend and friendship. This delightful, nearly wordless graphic novel portrays a kid with gumption enough to take on big business and smarts enough to advise the factory’s fix-it robot on repairs even though she just might be too young for kindergarten. Despite having little material means and few human connections, this kid creates life in the inanimate and fosters community where none could exist before.

Girl power at its best. A sure winner! (Graphic novel. 3-12)