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Kid Konnection: How to Say Goodbye in Robot

January 7, 2012

Bea moves to Baltimore the summer before her senior year of high school.  Moving is nothing new to her, but it does feel rather strange because all the other students in her class have known each other since preschool.  Bea is determined to not let that bother her and plans to make the best of things until it’s time to leave for college.  Things change when she meets Jonah.

Jonah, also known as Ghost Boy, is a loner and really doesn’t have any friends.  His relationship with his father is strained and there’s an event in his past that troubles him.  With Bea’s help, he decides to investigate and see if he can make things right.

I purposefully left the description of How to Say Goodbye in Robot, by Natalie Standiford, vague because I went into the book knowing little and I think that’s the best way to experience this delightful, quirky book.  The plot was a little far-fetched at times, but that didn’t bother me at all.  I loved the messages in this book – messages of friendship, love, and loyalty.

I loved the characters in this book too.  Bea and Jonah were both a little different, but they were true to themselves and didn’t really worry about what other people thought.  (Another great message.)  They’re just the kind of kids I like – smart, respectful, and quirky.  Jonah has an aura of sadness around him, but that’s understandable, and I think most people know someone like him.

There was just one thing that I felt was a little off in the book.  It portrayed teens drinking in public.  I realize high school kids drink but I don’t think it’s that easy for them to get alcohol in bars and restaurants.  It’s been a while since I was in high school, so it’s very possible I’m wrong.  That was really just a minor issue and it didn’t mar my enjoyment of the book at all.

There is no romance between Bea and Jonah and I found that rather refreshing.  I think How to Say Goodbye in Robot will appeal to both female and male readers.  It was certainly a hit with me!

For more children’s books reviews, go to Booking Mama’s feature, Kid Konnection. If you’d like to participate in Kid Konnection and share a post about anything related to children’s books (picture, middle grade, or young adult) from the past week,  leave a comment as well as a link on her site.

Review copy provided by Scholastic. I am an Indiebound Affiliate.
15 Comments leave one →
  1. January 7, 2012 8:39 am

    Interesting about the drinking. I wonder.

  2. January 7, 2012 9:09 am

    This looks wonderful. I know I have it somewhere around here. I need to give it a shot.

  3. January 7, 2012 9:11 am

    Sounds like a really good YA book. My girls just graduated from HS, and while they weren’t part of the drinking group, I’d say it was done more in parties. There are bars/clubs that allow 18 year olds but they mark them as underage. I do think there is so sneaking of drinks etc.
    Thanks for the review.

  4. January 7, 2012 9:19 am

    I do really like quirky characters who aren’t afraid to be themselves, and since my kids are sort of like this too, I think this would make a great read for us. I am betting that it’s something that both Melissa and I would enjoy, and I could probably interest my son in it too, though he is more like his father, and prefers to stick to fantasy and science fiction. Great review today, Kathy! I am glad you enjoyed the book!

  5. January 7, 2012 10:21 am

    This sounds wonderful. And it kind of reminds me of something I’d expect from John Green. I will definitely use this recommendation!

  6. January 7, 2012 10:46 am

    Sounds cute!

  7. January 7, 2012 11:31 am

    This book sounds different from what’s out there for kids. And your review stirred my curiosity.

  8. January 7, 2012 12:58 pm

    Sure people thought I was older than I was, but they still carded me until I was 23 or something, and here we get in at 18

  9. January 7, 2012 1:18 pm

    This sound like good YA. I do enjoy quirky characters.

  10. January 7, 2012 4:56 pm

    Except for the drinking, I like the messages in this book. I appreciate your vagueness about the plot. It raised my curiosity enough to put it on my list.

  11. January 7, 2012 8:14 pm

    Our 15 yr old daughter would probably like this – thanks for letting us know about HOW TO SAY GOODBYE … I agree w/your thoughts that it’s not easy for teens to be served in bars/restaurants. Heck, *I* get carded at bars and I’m clearly well over the drinking age!

  12. January 7, 2012 10:36 pm

    I heard about this book last year and wanted to read it then!

  13. January 8, 2012 10:03 am

    These are messages I want my son to have so I’ll have to keep this in mind whne he is older!

  14. January 9, 2012 12:21 am

    Kids are drinking in public these days? Yikes!

  15. January 10, 2012 3:57 pm

    Sometimes going into a book not really knowing what it’s about is the best thing. This one sounds like one I would like and I’m going to keep my eyes out for a copy.

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