What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know there’s abundant mayhem in this lively, action-packed adventure. Robot Zot sets off with his blaster to conquer Earth, where every mundane object he encounters -- a TV, a toaster, a blender -- seems to be a dangerous enemy. A hapless dog ends up taking the blame for the destruction wreaked by Zot.
What's the story?
Robot Zot crashes onto Earth, intent on defeating the planet: “Robot Zot! Wham Bot!” He bravely stomps off into an ordinary home, seeing danger in every direction and blasting away at appliances. Until he sees what he believes must be the Queen of all Earth -- a toy phone. Rescuing her is the greatest challenge he’s faced yet, but Robot Zot sets aside his fears and becomes Hero Zot.
Is it any good?
Parents who are trying to keep violence- and gun-free homes will want to give this one a wide berth. The gleeful, blast-‘em-up ethos will rightly give many other parents pause -- this pushes the envelope even for 5-year-olds, and it goes too far for younger kids in the publisher's recommended reading range of 3- to 7-year-olds. But older kids who delight in rambunctious, imaginative play will be delighted to find a book to match their energy level. And if you can get them to sit still a few minutes after reading it, you may be able to talk together about the folly of Zott’s aggressive, button-thumping approach.
Jon Scieszka’s robotic text sets the stage for David Shannon’s joke-filled illustrations. Kids will delight in seeing the clueless adult trying to make sense of the wreckage done by Zot, and the ferocity on Zot’s face as he confronts harmless kitchen appliances.
The animated illustrations tell the real story of the exploits of Robot Zot, who is a legend in his own mind. Background details reward close viewing.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about Robot Zot’s view of Earth. Why does he see such ordinary things as monsters? He doesn’t seem to know much about Earth. Do you think he would have attacked so ferociously if he knew more about Earth before landing?
In the end, Robot Zot escapes safely with his queen. Do you think he’s really a hero? What makes someone brave or heroic?