Tuesday, October 27, 2009

How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford

New to town, Beatrice is expecting her new best friend to be one of the girls she meets on the first day. But instead, the alphabet conspires to seat her next to Jonah, aka Ghost Boy, a quiet loner who hasn't made a new friend since third grade. Something about him, though, gets to Bea, and soon they form an unexpected friendship. It's not romance, exactly - but it's definitely love. Still, Bea can't quite dispel Jonah's gloom and doom - and as she finds out his family history, she understands why. Can Bea help Jonah? Or is he destined to vanish? - from book jacket


First off-to set people straight-this book is not about robots or anything sci-fi; it’s about love but not romance (Bea and Jonah are just good friends). In short, How to Say Goodbye in Robot is the bleak story of one unique friendship, a late night talk show, and too many goodbyes.
Bea and Jonah are different. Bea is the “stone child” who is slightly depressed about her parents and is tired of adjusting to new high schools every time her family moves. She’s different because she doesn’t do the whole “popularity” scene, plus she’s very artistic. Jonah is Canton High’s “ghost” boy. Jonah is a loner because he’s made to be. Bea and Jonah are the same, that’s why they become best friends. The late night talk show called Night Lights is a whimsical addition to the story that makes you smile and feel the stars; and the secret about Jonah’s brother is just as stunning.
I really liked How to Say Goodbye in Robot because of it’s unique characters and just the overall storyline. Most of the time I connected with Bea and shared her eye for the unique, but sometimes I did feel like Bea should have punched Jonah in the face for getting mad or jealous. Then again, Jonah has a right to be angry, he is so mistreated by his school mates and his father. The only thing I did not like about this book is it’s many references to drinking.
Some teens might have a hard time relating or even liking the characters of How to Say Goodbye in Robot simply because it’s not about your average teenagers. Some might even think of the story as being weird. If you don’t like books that go beyond the “normal” YA high school scene, then you probably won’t like this book. If you like things that are different, then you know that you will enjoy How to Say Goodbye In Robot.
Even though How to Say Goodbye In Robot may be a little odd at times (that’s the whole point), I thought it was a good story about a friendship like no other from a different point of view. I recommend to any teen who likes that taste of oddness.

Natalie Strandford does not know how to speak fluent robot, but she does know Maryland like the back of her hand, having grown up there and coming from a long line of Marylanders. Natalie now lives in New York. How to Say Goodbye in Robot is her first novel. www.nataliestandiford.com

|Pages: 276|Year Published: October 2009|Publisher: Scholastics|
|Genre: Contemporary fiction, friendship, high school, family drama|
|Age Group: YA, ages 14+|Content: Teen drinking, some language, and sensuality|

|Enjoyed It: 4/5|Content Rating: 3/5|Cover: 4/5|


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