Just Imagine

Boot

Authored by Shaun Hegarty
Illustrated by Ben Mantle
Published by Hodder Children's Books

This is the story of Boot, a small robot, who wakes up lost and alone in a scrapyard, with only two and a half incomplete memories, but a strong sense of knowing he has been loved.

Having escaped the dangers of the scrapyard, Boot sets out, determined to find his owner Beth. Boot meets other robots who live in the city, including Noke, and Red and together they try to piece together where Boot came from and where he belongs. But the city is full of unexpected dangers around every corner, especially when any robot found by a human automatically belongs to them, to do with whatever they want and Flint and the Cutters are always on the lookout for robot spare parts for the scrapyard. But Boot isn’t a normal robot; he has a cartoon face display like other robots, but his words don’t come out quite the right way and he can feel emotions. Will he ever be able to find Beth and what will he discover about himself if he does?

This book would be a welcome addition to any classroom, either as a class read or shared reading texts. It is both a thought-provoking and exciting well-paced story which explores themes such as belonging and what it means to be important to someone. The central character reminded me of WALL-E and I loved the different personalities of the robots and the humans, which would lead to lots of class discussion. This is the first book in new series form the author of Darkmouth and I am sure that Boot will become a much-loved character. The descriptions in the text are developed further by Ben Mantle’s charming illustrations. I recommend this book and can’t wait to see what happens in his next big adventure!