A Day with Wilbur Robinson

Book review by
Patricia Tauzer, Common Sense Media
A Day with Wilbur Robinson Book Poster Image
Wackiest sleepover ever in house of inventors.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this story about a boy's day in the house of wacky inventors is a bit strange and disjointed, but it's also unusual and captivating in its originality. Nothing objectionable is presented.

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What's the story?

When a young boy spends the night with his best friend, Wilbur, he finds himself invited into a very strange household of exotic creatures; inventive, eccentric relatives; and gadgets of all kinds. As the boys search the grounds for Grandfather's missing teeth, they have many interesting encounters. When the teeth are found, the family celebrates with a pillow fight and they all spend the night in a tree.

In the morning, Wilbur's entire family sends his friend on his way with a family rendition of "Yes, We Have No Bananas," after which Wilbur apologizes for having shared such a dull time with his friend.

Is it any good?

Readers of any age will want to spend much more than a single day visiting the pages of A DAY WITH WILBUR ROBINSON. Each page of illustrations (which are at once retro and futuristic) is a story in itself. In fact, the best way to approach this book would be to spend a few seconds reading the text and then use the bulk of your time to explore the adjacent illustration. One builds on the other, and the story grows and grows with each reading. All in all, A Day with Wilbur Robinson is quite an adventure, and anything but dull.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the various characters in Wilbur's family and all the contraptions they've invented. The visiting boy thinks his friend's house is the greatest place to visit -- why? Kids might enjoy talking about how they would feel if they visited a friend overnight and found he lived in such an unusual world. What would it be like to play in the snow inside your friend's house, or fly because an uncle turned on his antigravity machine, or sleep in a tree with the rest of the family after having a pillow fight?

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