Boot: small robot big adventure by Shane Hegarty

cover image

Illus. by Ben Mantle. Lothian, 2019. ISBN: 9781444949360.
(Age: 8-12) Highly recommended. Boot: small robot big adventure by Shane Hegerty is such a wonderful book which will be enjoyed by anyone who loved the movie and character Wall-e. The story begins with Boot, who wakes up in a scrap yard with only 2 and a half memories. He knows he must get back to Beth, his owner, as he also has an undeniable feeling that he is important to her.
This funny story follows a familiar path of the character being lost, going on a journey/adventure with newfound friends and finishes with them finding their way. Boot: small robot big adventure does all of that but with the added element of him working through new, human like emotions that are not usually associated with robots. I really like this aspect as readers can be absorbing the story and without even knowing it, be learning about a variety of emotions and to not be worried or afraid of them.
Another interesting element of the book is the notion of the 'changing world'. What Boot does remember of life before he ended up in the scrap yard has changed and things are now very different. Life is not simple anymore. It is easy to link this component to the current state of our world and how technology is more prevalent than ever.
The illustrations throughout the story are by Ben Mantle, who manages to bring life and emotion to Boot, and enhance the story in a way which will entice the younger reader and also add additional meaning to the older reader.
This story would be excellent for readers aged 8 to 12 as it includes themes that are all relevant to their world: new emotions, inclusion, social media and the futuristic new world. They will love Boot and his friends Noke and Red, and all of the funny tid-bits throughout.
I give it 4.5 out of 5.
Lauren Fountain