A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Offers an opportunity to discuss what makes us human. Could androids and humans ever be mistaken for each other?
Money doesn't guarantee happiness, but true friendship is pure gold.
Positive Role Models
Max, Josie, and Ivy question the very foundation of the Whatnot experiment, even as they learn unsettling answers.
Judging by the cover art, the cast of characters is very diverse in terms of skin tones.
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Violence & Scariness
There's talk of bullying, but no actual verbal or physical abuse is shown.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The School for Whatnots is a near-future science fiction novel about robots and androids replacing real kids. Author Margaret Peterson Haddix explores the question of what it means to be human, as her characters attempt to prove they are alive.
Is It Any Good?
Robots are popular characters in sci-fi, and this mindboggling adventure pits kids against machines. Author Margaret Peterson Haddix poses some twisty philosophical questions about humanity and identity. It's sometimes hard to distinguish one character from another, but the main characters -- Max, Josie, and Ivy -- are vibrant and memorable. The School for Whatnots is a stand-alone tale, and Haddix infuses it with a lot of tension, even if there some times when the suspense plateaus. Another solid effort by a master of the tween thriller.
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.