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Robobaby

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Robots are much more than machines in the emotionally resonant world of Robobaby, where the arrival of a new baby in a robot family is a festive occasion. Iconic picture book creator David Wiesner captures the excitement as Lugnut (father), Diode (mother), and big sister Cathode (Cathy) welcome the newcomer. Cathy, with her handy toolbox and advanced knowledge of robotics Robots are much more than machines in the emotionally resonant world of Robobaby, where the arrival of a new baby in a robot family is a festive occasion. Iconic picture book creator David Wiesner captures the excitement as Lugnut (father), Diode (mother), and big sister Cathode (Cathy) welcome the newcomer. Cathy, with her handy toolbox and advanced knowledge of robotics and IT, is ignored while the adults bungle the process of assembling baby Flange, with near catastrophic results. As the frantic, distracted adults rush about aimlessly, Cathy, unobserved, calmly clears up the technical difficulties and bonds with her new baby brother. Robobaby is a shout‑out for girl scientists and makers, and a treat for all young robot enthusiasts.


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Robots are much more than machines in the emotionally resonant world of Robobaby, where the arrival of a new baby in a robot family is a festive occasion. Iconic picture book creator David Wiesner captures the excitement as Lugnut (father), Diode (mother), and big sister Cathode (Cathy) welcome the newcomer. Cathy, with her handy toolbox and advanced knowledge of robotics Robots are much more than machines in the emotionally resonant world of Robobaby, where the arrival of a new baby in a robot family is a festive occasion. Iconic picture book creator David Wiesner captures the excitement as Lugnut (father), Diode (mother), and big sister Cathode (Cathy) welcome the newcomer. Cathy, with her handy toolbox and advanced knowledge of robotics and IT, is ignored while the adults bungle the process of assembling baby Flange, with near catastrophic results. As the frantic, distracted adults rush about aimlessly, Cathy, unobserved, calmly clears up the technical difficulties and bonds with her new baby brother. Robobaby is a shout‑out for girl scientists and makers, and a treat for all young robot enthusiasts.

30 review for Robobaby

  1. 5 out of 5

    La Coccinelle

    I think I expected more from David Wiesner. This is chaotic, messy, and somehow boring. A whole bunch of characters are dumped onto the page, and we're expected to care. I'm afraid I don't. Basically, a family of robots is welcoming a new addition. In their haste to assemble their new baby, they neglect to install the updates. The thing goes haywire and the family has to call in the experts. The daughter, Cathode (Cathy), saves the day with her tinkering skills. The illustrations are skillfully do I think I expected more from David Wiesner. This is chaotic, messy, and somehow boring. A whole bunch of characters are dumped onto the page, and we're expected to care. I'm afraid I don't. Basically, a family of robots is welcoming a new addition. In their haste to assemble their new baby, they neglect to install the updates. The thing goes haywire and the family has to call in the experts. The daughter, Cathode (Cathy), saves the day with her tinkering skills. The illustrations are skillfully done. But the text almost seems like an afterthought. And there was so much going on in some of the pictures that I was a bit overwhelmed. I might recommend this to fans of robots, but that's about it. The story isn't anything special.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Suebee

    Look, I know David Wiesner is a genius. As a librarian turned homeschool-mom-and-art-teacher-at-homeschool co-op, I appreciate his intricate, clean watercolor work more than ever before. BUT the difficult part about this book is it's not that accessible for kids. Older kids will get it, especially the punch line on the last page - the robot family ordered a robo-baby and have trouble assembling it, and hidden in the box is another robo-baby, "Twins!" Because he used the same color palette for all Look, I know David Wiesner is a genius. As a librarian turned homeschool-mom-and-art-teacher-at-homeschool co-op, I appreciate his intricate, clean watercolor work more than ever before. BUT the difficult part about this book is it's not that accessible for kids. Older kids will get it, especially the punch line on the last page - the robot family ordered a robo-baby and have trouble assembling it, and hidden in the box is another robo-baby, "Twins!" Because he used the same color palette for all the members of the robot family, it's a bit difficult to differentiate who's who. (Is that the Uncle? Or the Dad? and the robot daughter (we thought it was a son) Cathode being called "Cath" sometimes, and "Cathy" others was a bit confusing.) The illustrations are also really really busy so it takes some time to figure out what's going on. It's not a story that I enjoy reading aloud either, because the only text is many different speech bubbles from various characters, including Clank the "dog." It's chaotic.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Nadine Jones

    This is a really cute idea, and it's Wiesner so you know the art is great!! But Wiesner likes to tell the story with his pictures. I want my picture books to be a beautiful pairing of art AND words, so I always feel a bit disappointed by Wiesner's books. Robobaby is not one of his wordless books, but the words here are all dialogue, which means if I were reading this aloud, I would need to add in descriptions of who is talking and what they are doing. There's no fun rhyming or rhythms, it's just This is a really cute idea, and it's Wiesner so you know the art is great!! But Wiesner likes to tell the story with his pictures. I want my picture books to be a beautiful pairing of art AND words, so I always feel a bit disappointed by Wiesner's books. Robobaby is not one of his wordless books, but the words here are all dialogue, which means if I were reading this aloud, I would need to add in descriptions of who is talking and what they are doing. There's no fun rhyming or rhythms, it's just: "Go, Sprocket!" and "Let me!" It's really cute that the robots all have "machinery" names, like Flange and Cathode (nickname Cathy) and Diode (nickname Di) and Manifold (nickname Manny). I get the joke, but will kids? Do preschoolers know what a cathode is? In short, this is a cute story, and I giggled a bit at the robot's difficulties, but in the end I felt it was just ok.

  4. 5 out of 5

    MeganRuth - Alohamora Open a Book

    Another cute story by Wiesner. Love the illustrations, and I love the idea of Robots having babies. I also loved that Cathy is the one fixing the baby as well as the surprise ending. Super creative, super fun, and a simple read. I see this better suited for a parent/child reading.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth S

    The robot names were fun. However, there were too many characters, too much going on on each page, I found it impossible to keep track of who was which. And that made the story almost impossible to follow. Disappointing.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Pam

    I received an electronic ARC from Clarion Books through Edelweiss+. Wiesner again creates highly detailed illustrations that tell so much of the story beyond the easy to follow text. The new baby arrives and everyone has difficulty assembly Flange. Finally, the older sister, Cathode, gets a chance to assemble her sibling and everything works fine. I chuckled at the surprise ending and so will young readers. As is also the case, there's so much more than the surface fun to a Wiesner book. In this c I received an electronic ARC from Clarion Books through Edelweiss+. Wiesner again creates highly detailed illustrations that tell so much of the story beyond the easy to follow text. The new baby arrives and everyone has difficulty assembly Flange. Finally, the older sister, Cathode, gets a chance to assemble her sibling and everything works fine. I chuckled at the surprise ending and so will young readers. As is also the case, there's so much more than the surface fun to a Wiesner book. In this case, discussion will pull out several themes including not ignoring someone because they're younger and following directions when needed.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Krissy Neddo

    Tough to read aloud- clipped dialogue in speech bubbles feels choppy. Too many names and characters with little to no plot. Lesson: Read and follow directions. Not a first purchase. Maybe borrow from public library for child obsessed with robots. They may enjoy illustrations.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie Bange

    A comedy of errors and puns galore in this out-of-this-world tale. When the robot parents open the box and begin assembling their new baby robot, problems ensue. Calls for help bring on more complications, until finally the solution springs from an unlikely source, she also delivers a big surprise at the end. Caldecott Award Winner Wiesner has added another stellar work to his oeuvre. It is excitement and chaos when the new 278-pound baby arrives. Wiesner superimposes the events surrounding a newb A comedy of errors and puns galore in this out-of-this-world tale. When the robot parents open the box and begin assembling their new baby robot, problems ensue. Calls for help bring on more complications, until finally the solution springs from an unlikely source, she also delivers a big surprise at the end. Caldecott Award Winner Wiesner has added another stellar work to his oeuvre. It is excitement and chaos when the new 278-pound baby arrives. Wiesner superimposes the events surrounding a newborn baby with this robot family, focusing on the humor and making it into a comedy of errors. Mother Diode can't deliver/assemble Flange herself, she calls for Uncle Manifold's help. Uncle Manny, disregarding instructions, makes his own "improvements". When those are a bust, big sister Cathode sics the robot dog Sprocket on the rogue Flange and brings him back home all done. Wiesner's watercolors are stunning in their "other worldliness". Though most of the robots use the same color schemes (golden yellow, steel gray/gray, and red orange) their bodies are all unique shapes. It may take readers a time or two of reading this closely and decoding the illustrations to see all of the detail and to really get the humor. Close your eyes and read this one aloud; it sounds like the confusion surrounding a live baby birth. Not for storytime, best reserved for laptime or individual reading. A great gift book for parents of newborns... Highly Recommended for PreSchool-grade 2.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Tasha

    In a world of robots, a family gets a new delivery. Cathode has gotten a new baby brother called Flange. The baby comes in a box, advertising it as a new model. Quickly, Cathode’s parents start to assemble the new baby, but it seems that babies have gotten more complex since Cathode was assembled. The parents call on an uncle to come and lend a hand in building Flange. Though Cathode offers to help, she is pushed to the side as Uncle Manny starts to work. But he doesn’t follow the directions and In a world of robots, a family gets a new delivery. Cathode has gotten a new baby brother called Flange. The baby comes in a box, advertising it as a new model. Quickly, Cathode’s parents start to assemble the new baby, but it seems that babies have gotten more complex since Cathode was assembled. The parents call on an uncle to come and lend a hand in building Flange. Though Cathode offers to help, she is pushed to the side as Uncle Manny starts to work. But he doesn’t follow the directions and with some “improvements” and a lack of software updates, it all goes wrong. With help from her dog, Cathode steps in, follows the directions, and does the software updates. Finally, there is a newly assembled baby in the family. But wait, there might be another surprise for this family! Wiesner has won multiple Caldecott Awards and Honors. This picture book is a bit of a departure from his more serious books, offering a merry look at a robotic land where families are much the same as they are now. Cathode is a great character, undaunted by being ignored and willing to make her own choices. The text is strictly speech bubbles, allowing the illustrations to shine and the pacing to be wonderfully brisk. The illustrations are done in watercolors that glow on the page, filled with the light of robot eyes and a white glowing floor that lights everything. The comic book framing of the illustrations works well as the action picks up, offering glimpses of what is about to go wrong before it actually does. An engaging look at robots, STEM and sisterhood. Appropriate for ages 3-5.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Becky B

    A mother, father, and soon to be big sister robot are all excited for the arrival of their robobaby. But the assembly proves a bit difficult until an unexpected hero steps in to save the day. Cute, but not my favorite Wiesner. This one is unusual for the amount of words in it, and I found the text sometimes a little hard to follow (you need to read the text bubbles in the middle sometimes before the text bubbles on the left, but there's not visual clue as to which to read first). Still, I can see A mother, father, and soon to be big sister robot are all excited for the arrival of their robobaby. But the assembly proves a bit difficult until an unexpected hero steps in to save the day. Cute, but not my favorite Wiesner. This one is unusual for the amount of words in it, and I found the text sometimes a little hard to follow (you need to read the text bubbles in the middle sometimes before the text bubbles on the left, but there's not visual clue as to which to read first). Still, I can see some huge robot fans adoring this book and helpful big sisters too.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    Cathode's robot family is excited when baby brother arrives. However, the grownups are having trouble assembling baby Flange and are too busy to listen to Cathode's advice. Fortunately, big sister, Cathode, and her pet, Sprocket, save the day and the baby. A mixture of large two page spreads with comic-book panels and balloon dialog make this a fun, kid-friendly celebration of family. This zany picture book with be especially appreciated by young science fiction readers as well as DIY fans.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Beverly

    Possible contender for the Mock Caldecott Awards in January. This book is adorable!!! A robot family whose names are all the same as various parts of a robot. Their new baby, Flange, arrives in his box and all they have to do is assemble him. This turns into a family event where they eventually have to call in Uncle Manny to help!! Great story, great characters and a great ending...your children will love it!!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Diane

    The new robobaby has arrived! Of course, it must be assembled. It's a new model and doesn't seem to be built the same way Cathode was. Cathode wants to help, but the adults think they should be the one to assemble the baby. But they keep getting it wrong, partly because they're not reading the instruction manual. But when Cathode finally gets a chance, she proves that she's a pretty good big sister! Delightful illustrations 😊

  14. 5 out of 5

    Annamarie Carlson (she, her)

    Robot family orders a robot baby (from baby supplier Robobaby). The adults struggle with assembling their new family member, but big sister knows what to do. This felt a bit chaotic. I wasn't entirely sure what was happening on most spreads involving the extended robot family, and I'm not sure how easily kids will be able to follow along. For kids who like robots, the story may not matter as much as the cool robot illustrations (there are plenty).

  15. 4 out of 5

    Chance Lee

    A family of robots accurately depicts the chaos of welcoming a new child. This book was a little too chaotic for me, but an independent reader who is expecting a new sibling may get a kick out of it.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Ellon

    Overall, I kind of found this to be a jumbled mess but that little surprised at the very end was adorable. It was painfully obvious from page one so was going to save the day. All of the robot names were a little hard for me to follow as an adult, I could see kids really struggling.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jo Oehrlein

    When the box with the new baby comes, the parents try to assemble it and have issues. They call Uncle Manifold for help. They haven't followed the instructions and they haven't done the updates. Chaos ensues. Big Sister Cathode saves the day.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Brian

    The illustrations in this book are very impressive. The story feels a bit cluttered however, mostly because there is no narrator. Everything is dialogue driven which makes reading this out-loud less than ideal. Fun concept.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Marcia

    Hmm... I just didn't love this book, and I am a fan. There is cleverness, for sure, but this story of a newly expanding robot family seemed to be missing a few pieces. I think it would have been more fun in a wordless, graphic novel format, that pulled the dense illustrations out a bit.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jared White

    I love some of Wiesner's books, Flotsam in particular, but I was not a big fan of this one. I think I tend to prefer his books which are wordless or almost wordless, the text in this one was just off a bit somehow...maybe it was supposed to be that way since the characters are robots?

  21. 4 out of 5

    Andréa

    Note: I accessed a digital review copy of this book through Edelweiss.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    Lots of fun mechanical names to talk about.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Edward Sullivan

    An offbeat, appealingly illustrated robotic romp.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Kelley

    Cute, great illustrations!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    There is a lot going on on every page. With the colors being so similar, it can be hard to keep track of each character. Not my favorite of his, but he seems to like it a lot, so good for him.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Lisa D

    Loved it! Cute book!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Alice

    3.5 stars

  28. 4 out of 5

    Michele

    This is cute and somewhat disturbing at the same time!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    Wiesner does it again! What a hilarious book of a family of robots trying to assemble their new baby. It's a visual feast with lots of intricate details to discover on each page.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    Poor David Wiesner. He's set the bar so high for himself, an above average book doesn't make an impact on me. It's cute and spectacularly drawn, but...well, you know. You've read his other books.

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