Monday, November 7, 2011

How to Say Goodbye in Robot (Natalie Standiford)

Title: How to Say Goodbye in Robot
Author: Natalie Standiford
Publisher: Scholastic
Length: 273 pages
Rating: 3/5

Today’s post is a nostalgic read, as I’m feeling rather melancholy this Monday. For the record, I really like robots and really dislike goodbyes.

Bea is new in town, and somehow she becomes best friends with Ghost Boy (Jonah), who hasn’t made a new friend since third grade, and who is so pale people think he might disappear. Jonah and Bea’s friendship isn’t your topical high school friendship. It’s powerful, and while it’s not quite romantic, it’s love, as Bea and Jonah have finally found that other person just like themselves.

This is a book about the power of friendship. I’m quite taken with the idea of true friendship. But I was a little worried for Bea in this book. Yes, it’s important to always be there for your best friend, but not to the determent of yourself! Bea is just trying to find her place in the new town, and Jonah wants her all for himself, but without giving himself fully. This isn’t healthy and frustrated me as a reader. But it’s all part of the learning process. Friends can be the best teaching tool about oneself that exist. Plus, Bea needs Jonah to teach her to not be an emotionless robot, even if it’s safer to go through life that way.

Another thing that made this book unique is the sounds of a late night radio show peppered throughout the book that Bea and Jonah listen to and connect over. I liked that this book was quirky and completely different than anything I’ve read before, just like the quirky likability of true friends.  

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