Sunday, February 3, 2013

A Boy and His Bot by Daniel H. Wilson

Here is an interesting twist on Alice in Wonderland.  Code goes on a field trip to see some Native American burial mounds.  Code is particularly interested in them because his grandfather had studied the mounds up until the time he disappeared a year before.  While Code is exploring he meets a small flying robot who leads him "down the rabbit hole," and into a world populated exclusively by robots.  Suspecting this might be the place to which his grandfather disappeared, Code summons up his courage to go and search for him.  Along the way he meets all kinds of robots, and even has one custom made for him.  Soon Code, and his robot, Gary, discover the dark secret the has put Code's grandfather, and the entire robot world in mortal peril.  This is the kind of book that a 4th or 5th grade SciFi loving boy could really enjoy.  The Mekhos world is imaginative, and the boy, Code, gradually overcomes his fear, and becomes a hero just in time, just as we would expect him to.  The story isn't likely to hold up to the scrutiny of a more experienced SciFi reader.  There are a bunch of problems with physics and scale and world building that will bother someone who stops too long to think about them.  But younger readers are not likely to worry to much about that, and will just enjoy the exciting story and likable characters. (180 p.)

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