Fads will come and go, but robots will stay the same for ever and ever (sometimes literally). From Robby the Robot to BB-8, culture likes to make cyborgs look like loyal friends, which is why kids are so into them. If your kids are always yelling “BEEP! BOOP! BEEP!” from a bucket on their head, then read these 8 books about robots to get your sci-fi fix (or at least put eyeholes in that bucket). Even if they don’t like robots, it might be a good idea to put these into the mix. You should make sure your child is ready to welcome robots into the world any day now.
Awesome Dawson By Chris Dall
When Tony Stark tries to make a good robot, he ends up making one that wants to kill the world. This is a little bit like that, but the genius creator here is a boy named Dawson and the evil robot is a vacuum cleaner he made to do his chores more quickly. All of Dawson’s smarts are going to have to be used to get rid of the evil sucker. That’s fine, because vacuums don’t feel. Like Tony Stark when he’s drunk.
Four to seven
Robot Zot By Jon Scieszka
Robot Zot is the ruler of all the worlds. The size of him doesn’t matter. Think of him as Joe Pesci in Goodfellas. He’s small but mighty, and he can take down anyone who stands in his way. Less F-bombs: With the help of toddlers and dogs, Zot changes his ways when he falls in love with a baby telephone. Who could say no to a toy like that? In other words, it’s a typical villain-turned-hero story in which he saves an inanimate woman in distress. A story that has been around for a long time.
3-7 years old
Robots, Robots, Everywhere!, by Sue Fleiss
Using rhyming verse and silly pictures, this book shows where robots can be found (like under rugs, between couch cushions, and in space) and what they look like. It will make any kid who is into robots go on a search for them around your house. If they don’t find anything, you’ll have a lot more problems.
Readers learn about all kinds of robots through clever rhymes and fun illustrations. Enjoy this world, whether you’re in space or on the ground. It’s full of different kinds of robots.
2-5 years old
Robot Zombie Frankenstein by Annette Simon
If you and your friends dressed up as different characters, what would you do? This book asks that question. It’s about two robots who become best friends and try to outdo each other by wearing different costumes, like Frankenstein and zombies, to try to be better than the other. The book reaffirms the good idea that a little friendly competition can help build a stronger friendship. Unless, of course, Super Smash Bros. is in the picture.
Little Bot And Sparrow By Jake Parker
If you read a book about robots and animals having a friendship, you either think it’s a heartwarming and inspirational story, or it’s propaganda for when robots take over. The story of a motherly bird who takes in a lost droid and eventually helps him learn to fly will likely be fun for your kids. People, this is how it starts.
The Three Little Aliens and the Big Bad Robot by Margaret McNamara
Like the Three Little Pigs: Besides the fact that it’s set in space and there are aliens and robots instead of pigs and wolves, it’s about the same. And there are planets instead of houses in this story, as well. You don’t hear huffing and puffing or hairs on the back of your neck. This is a good place to go. It’s not the same story, but this one gives kids a tour of the solar system as the aliens go on a journey to take out their robot enemy.
Age: 4 to 8.
The Robot Book by Heather Brown
Kids can touch this book to find out what’s inside a robot (hint: it’s mostly disgust for dirty people). Children learn that the parts inside robots are important, and they can spin gears and pop out columns to see what goes in them.
Boy and Bot by Ame Dyckman
Boy: I’m afraid something is wrong when my robot buddy shuts down to charge. Robot: I’m afraid my human friend might be sick when I go to bed. One thing that both of them don’t understand about rest is that it’s important. But it leads to a deeper friendship and the kind of magic that made Murtaugh and Riggs a powerful team. Even though you might be scared by the idea of having a robot watch your little boy sleep, this isn’t any different than your child falling asleep near a phone.
One day, a boy and a robot become friends. Unfortunately, their play time is cut short when the robot shuts down. The boy tries to help his new friend, but it doesn’t work. The good news is that the power comes back on, so they can play again. Children will love this story of friendship.
2-5 years old
Robo-Sauce by Adam Rubin, illustrated by Daniel Salmieri
Assume that there was a magical recipe that could make you turn into the real thing. What do you think? This book has a surprise ending that you have to read to believe! This picture book is full of robots that do a lot of damage. It’s a lot of fun.
R is for Robot by Adam F. Watkins
Robots that are very expressive work very hard to get all the metal letters they need to make a complete alphabet. As you might expect, their work is noisy. People say “Ahooga,” “Beep, Boop, Clash.” The book is a great read-aloud story for kids who love making silly noises.
Stop! Bot! by James Yang
Everybody in a little boy’s apartment building tries to get hold of his robot when it floats away. But will they be able to save the bot before it drifts away? As you go on this lovely journey, pay attention to the beautiful illustrations.