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I wish I could step into the brain of Peter Brown. Author and illustrator of picture book mega hits like Creepy Carrots and My Teacher is a Monster, I feel like his brain would be like stepping into a cartoon twilight zone. Brown’s middle grade debut, The Wild Robot, is a lot of fun, with a great message. A cargo ship carrying a large shipment of robots crashes off the coast of a small island. Only one robot washes up on the shore unscathed – and through a series of fateful events, robot Roz ends up not only activated, but as a valued member of the island’s community. The Wild Robot is straightforward, just like the text in Brown’s picture books – no frills or fancy language to be found; imaginative readers will appreciate this, as it leaves room for daydreaming. With short chapters and frequent illustrations, it almost reads like a series of picture books published together. The Wild Robot would make a great read-aloud and is sure to attract a wide range of readers. I love the way Brown lets readers hurt and question along with Roz as the native residents of the island exclude her because she looks and acts different, and then come to realize just how much this different creature has to offer their community. There are amazing conversations to be had here, and Brown makes it happen like no one else. I dare you to read without getting attached to sweet, lovable Roz and her island family. Brown leaves the door open for a sequel, and I look forward to it. #brianthecat #meow
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