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Robot Dreams

Robot Dreams Robot Dreams Robot Dreams

Robot Dreams back

Sara Varon


Page 45 Review by Tom

A sophisticatedly subtle and almost entirely silent narrative on the joy and sorrow of friendship.

A lonely dog purchases a D.I.Y. Robot kit and builds himself a trusty companion. The duo seem set, renting Laputa from the library, having cosy movie nights in. But when an awesome day at the beach ends with the mechanical friend rusted immobile, the dog does the unthinkable and just abandons him where he lies on a beach towel. From here on in the sombre maturity of this book shines through.

When a summer friendship with the duck family ends due to the winter migration, and a case of indigestion (and culture clash) cut short his socialising with a pair of Ant-Eaters, the dog finds himself ridden with guilt for abandoning the only friend who was really there for him. All the while the poor neglected robot lies on the beach unable to move. As the seasons slowly drift by he dreams of being found by new friends and going on adventures, while in reality each new season brings a new hardship. Limbs are lost in the autumn, and he's buried by a hard snow in the winter months. And while a nest of hatchlings provide a brief companionship in his armpit come spring, he's thrown in the junkyard when the beach is cleared for summer.

Sara's wise and moving commentary on the nature of how friendships change and refine us in time - despite how we may feel when it all goes wrong - rings true. And thankfully she refrains from giving the reader a clichéd happy reunion ending, opting instead for a (literally) changed robot forgiving his former friend, while the dog learns from his past neglect, applying lessons taught to care for his new friends. This book competes with Simone Lia's FLUFFY for being the most Aawwwww-inducing book in the shop.
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