Reviews for Robot Zombie Frankenstein!

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2012 Fall
Robot meets Robot. One runs off and returns as Robot Zombie. The other zips off and returns as Robot Zombie Frankenstein. Who will win this friendly game of make-believe one-upmanship? They both do. Text and art are as minimal as can be; Simon's digitally created robots, composed of bright geometric shapes on a plain white background, have strong preschool appeal.

Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2012 #2
Robot meets Robot. One runs off the page and returns as Robot Zombie. Not to be outdone, the other zips off and quickly returns as Robot Zombie Frankenstein. The friendly contest continues until both colorful 'bots are Robot Zombie Frankenstein Pirate Superhero-in-disguise Outer Space Invader Chefs. In their increasingly inventive game of make-believe one-upmanship, who will win? Turns out they both do: when one robot adds a pie to its ensemble and the other a fork, it makes for happy robot friends. In Simon's digital art, the robots are composed of bright geometric shapes set off against a plain white background. Both text and art are as minimal as can be: no props or scenery (other than a delicious photograph of a cherry pie) pull focus from the layers of accessories and costumes the robots don. Resembling LEGO figures, the yellow-faced robots with blocky bodies will have a strong appeal for preschoolers. Simon invites the audience in on the game, showcasing on the front and endpapers all the shapes she uses to create her story. Robot Zombie Frankenstein! will provoke squeals of laughter in a large storytime but may also entice the solo reader to try out geometric art of his or her own. ashley waring Copyright 2012 Horn Book Magazine Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2012 February #1
Competitive pals get into a war of escalating ridiculousness in this amusing if visually stunted tale. Two robots introduce themselves to readers, then one zips away and back to reintroduce itself as "Robot ZOMBIE!" Not to be outdone, its companion dons a costume of its own, now appearing as "Robot Zombie Frankenstein!" And up the ante goes. With each change, the robots pile on more and more visual elements (a Frankenstein scar, Groucho glasses, etc.). When the robots both appear as "Robot zombie Frankenstein pirate superhero-in-disguise outer space invader chef," one robot produces a tasty cherry pie and the two dig in, rivalry forgotten and buddies once more. The endpapers display the full roster of shapes that make up each costume. While the effect is novel and the chaos sure to prove hilarious to young readers, there is something oddly static about the digital art itself. In its attempt to simplify the visuals down to their most essential shapes, the story is drained of the vitality and charisma normally associated with Simon's work. Thanks to the use of shapes, this book may work best with craft programs more than anything else. Yet in an era in which electronics are always one-upping one another in the global market, it's nice to see a picture-book equivalent that ends with the consumption of delicious desserts. Apple and PC, take note. (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2012 March #2

In Simon's Mocking Birdies (Simply Read, 2005), two singing birds faced off against each other. In this outing, Simon uses brightly colored shapes, substantial creativity, and a photograph of cherry pie to construct a story of robotic one-upmanship. In the opening scene, two robots--one magenta, the other green with an orange necktie--stare at readers from against a white backdrop and introduce themselves: "Robot." "Robot." The green bot dashes off and returns as a "Robot Zombie!" (a chunk of its head is missing, ovals of red "blood" drip from its mouth), and the other promptly tops its adversary with a "robot zombie Frankenstein" costume, which adds a forehead scar, spiky toupee, and neck bolts. Matters escalate. "Robot zombie Frankenstein pirate superhero-in-disguise outer space invader CHEF!" the robots shout, barreling toward each other. The cumulative chaos of the robots' costumes stands in humorous contrast to Simon's narrative and visual discipline, as she pokes fun at the human desire to be #1 and acknowledges the "Where did that come from?" nature of in-the-moment creativity. Ages 4-8. Agent: Brenda Bowen, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. (Apr.)

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School Library Journal Reviews 2012 April

PreS-K--This highly entertaining method of introducing a concept begins and ends with brightly colored, digitally created shapes pictured and labeled on the endpapers; close examination reveals differences in the named pieces from front to back pages. Simon tells a simple, humorous tale of two robots and their imaginative play and quick costume changes. At the start, the two figures stand next to each other and declare themselves to be "Robot. Robot." However, the green one dashes off the page and returns as a "Robot ZOMBIE!" He has added rectangular "tatters" to his clothing, a rectangular hot pink "brain" to a square dent in his head, and red oval blood dripping from his mouth. His hand is lying on the floor behind him. The other robot doesn't want to be outdone, so he mutters, "Yikes. Robot reboot…" and becomes "Robot Zombie Frankenstein!" As the bots one-up one another, the competition gets fierce until the two finally declare a truce when a pie and a fork appear. This hilarious title works for one-on-one sharing as participants can discuss the many different shapes shown, and in a group setting where children will laugh at the rivalry of the two mechanical characters. Great fun!--Maryann H. Owen, Racine Public Library, WI

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