A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Introduction to classic kids' novel Robinson Crusoe. Examples of survival skills: how to make shelter and clothes, and get food and water. Photograph of actual costume and information in art and author's note about materials needed. Examples in art of wildlife and sea life.
Books can transport us. Imaginative play is fun, and our imaginations can take us on adventures. Friends can apologize when they hurt our feelings, and we can accept their apologies and move on. Survival skills are useful.
Positive Role Models
Peter loves books, especially Robinson Crusoe. He and his friends love to play imaginative games. Peter is self-reliant, surviving and thriving alone on an island. Peter's friends apologize for making fun of him. His mom is creative and makes a beautiful costume.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Robinson, by three-time Caldecott Honor-winning author-illustrator Peter Sis (The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain), takes us on a magical voyage to a deserted island. Readers can imagine they're on the adventure themselves. How would you get food, water, shelter? The story's based on an evocative childhood memory, and references the classic novel Robinson Crusoe, which Sis loved. But kids don't have to know that book to be entranced by this one. Sis touches on issues of mild bullying and staying true to yourself, while communicating a deep love of literature and transporting readers to an island adventure.
Is It Any Good?
This master author-illustrator takes his childhood memories of a classic kids' novel and crafts them into a new adventure story that's mesmerizing and emotionally resonant. Robinson starts off routinely enough with a kid and a costume party. We feel Peter's excitement as he puts on his elaborate costume, and then share his distress when his friends make fun of him. But suddenly Peter's carried by a fever dream to a wild island where he lives out his Robinson Crusoe fantasy, and readers are transported with him.
Peter Sis has been a Caldecott Honoree three times for a reason. His art is sumptuous. In this book, he delivers up exotic wildlife and trees, gives us a stunning aerial view of the island and Peter's activities, and a dreamy view of the island dipping its roots deep into the ocean. Midnight blues tint the fevered Peter as his "head swims," and when we turn the page, an aqua wash transports his boat to the island. This book is sure to inspire kids to embark on their own adventures, literary and otherwise.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.