Reviews for Strange Case of Origami Yoda
Booklist Reviews 2010 May #1
Tommy and his friends think that Dwight is a weirdo who's "always talking about robots or spiders or something." In true Dwight fashion, he shows up at school one day brandishing a little origami Yoda finger puppet. The really weird thing is that it doles out very un-Dwight-like bits of wisdom, and the mystery is whether the Yoda is just Dwight talking in a funny voice or if it actually has mystical powers. The book is structured as a collection of stories gathered by Tommy and told by kids who either believe or don't. See, Tommy has a more vested interest than just idle curiosity--he is dying to know if he can trust Yoda's advice about asking the cute girl to dance with him at the PTA Fun Night. Origami Yoda--a sort of talking cootie catcher--is the kind of thing that can dominate all those free moments in school for a few weeks. Angleberger's rendering of such a middle-grade cultural obsession is not only spot-on but also reveals a few resonant surprises hidden in the folds. Naturally, Yoda-making instructions are included. Copyright 2010 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2010 Fall
Uncertain whether or not classmate Dwight's advice-dispensing finger puppet is real, sixth grader Tommy gathers first-hand accounts of how Origami Yoda helped other kids. It's doubtful that oddball Dwight could be behind so many social triumphs, but Tommy builds an amusing case, accompanied by doodle-like illustrations, for Origami Yoda's wisdom and lets readers decide for themselves. Copyright 2010 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2015 #2
"Welcome to Yawnee Valley, an idyllic place with rolling green hills that slope down to creeks, and cows as far as the eye can see." Forced to leave behind both his beloved seaside home and his proud reputation as the class prankster, Miles Murphy dreads starting over in this new town where the air smells bovine. At school Miles becomes an immediate target for both the defensive Principal Barkin and his school-bully son. He also finds himself paired up with a do-gooder named Niles. Worst of all, Miles discovers that an impressive and anonymous prankster already attends the Yawnee Valley Science and Letters Academy. Miles must either out-prank this character…or join forces. Full of well-timed comedy, the chapters jump from scene to scene like crisp film cuts. Interspersed throughout are cow facts from the Yawnee Valley Dairy Council (1,346 Interesting Things You May or May Not Know About Cows) and punchy line drawings that magnify the book's dry humor and clever details. Well-paced for pleasure reading, this lively start to a new series provides great insight into social dynamics -- as well as prank planning and execution! julie roac Copyright 2014 Horn Book Magazine.
Kirkus Reviews 2010 March #1
Sixth grader Tommy has a dilemma: He doesn't know whether to trust the advice of Origami Yoda, who dispenses wisdom from his perch on the finger of mega-nerd Dwight. Tommy compiles this case file, written by himself and other students who have benefited (or not) from Dwight/Yoda's help, in an attempt to decide. Tommy's friend Harvey, a skeptic, comments on each story, and another friend, Kellen, illustrates. Yoda counsels students on everything from American Idol outcomes to overcoming fear of softball failure to what to do when you get a little water stain on your pants in just the wrong place. Though Tommy's not forthcoming, it's pretty easy to guess what he's uncertain about, but it's never easy to guess the next twist in this kooky charmer of a Cyrano mystery tale. The arch and dry (and sometimes slapstick) humor of Angleberger's first will keep the pages turning. The stories are presented in a different typeface from Harvey's comments and Tommy's, and the whole is designed to look like a battered journal, crinkled paper and all. A skewed amalgam of Wayside Stories and Wimpy Kid that is sure to please fans of both. (Origami Yoda instructions) (Fiction. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2010 March #3
"Is Origami Yoda real?" is the question that plagues sixth-grader Tommy and drives the plot of this snappy debut. From one perspective, Origami Yoda is a finger puppet that offers cryptic but oddly sage advice to Tommy and his classmates. From another, he is simply the "green paperwad" animated by Tommy's misfit friend, Dwight, who "wear[s] shorts with his socks pulled up above his knees" and stares into space "like a hypnotized chicken." Compiling a series of funny, first-person accounts of Yoda's wisdom from his friends, Tommy hopes to solve this mystery to determine whether to trust Yoda's advice about asking a certain girl to dance. Angleberger peppers his chapters with spot-on boy banter, humorously crude Captain Underpants-style drawings, and wisecrack asides that comically address the social land mines of middle school. Tommy confronts the ethical dilemma of standing up for the weird kid and the angst of school dances: "My hands were shaking and my stomach was excited like the time my dad accidentally drove into a fire hydrant." But with enigmatic counsel like "Cheetos for everyone you must buy," Yoda keeps the mystery alive. Ages 8-12. (Apr.) [Page 53]. Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews 2010 May
Gr 3-6--For Tommy, the only question is whether or not Origami Yoda is real. Of course he's real as a small puppet on Dwight's finger. But does the oracle possess magic power? In order to find out, he decides to compile scientific evidence from the experiences of those who asked Origami Yoda for help. His friend Harvey is invited to comment on each story because he thinks Yoda is nothing but a "green paper wad." Tommy also comments because he's supposedly trying to solve the puzzle. In actuality, the story is about boys and girls in sixth grade trying to figure out how being social works. In fact, Tommy says, "…it's about this really cool girl, Sara, and whether or not I should risk making a fool of myself for her." The situations that Yoda has a hand in are pretty authentic, and the setting is broad enough to be any school. The plot is age-old but with the twist of being presented on crumpled pages with cartoon sketches, supposed hand printing, and varying typefaces. Kids should love it.--Sheila Fiscus, Our Lady of Peace School, Erie, PA [Page 105]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.