How To Say Goodbye In Robot

How To Say Goodbye In Robot

 
0.0
 
4.2 (2)
758   0
Write Review
How To Say Goodbye In Robot
Age Range
14+
Release Date
December 01, 2010
ISBN
0545107091
Buy This Book
      

From bestselling author Natalie Standiford, an amazing, touching story of two friends navigating the dark waters of their senior year. 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?

User reviews

2 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.2
Plot 
 
4.5  (2)
Characters 
 
4.0  (2)
Writing Style 
 
4.0  (2)
Already have an account? or Create an account
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

Maggie Stiefvater recommended it. I took her word for it and never looked back.

Now, you probably know by now that YA contemp is totally not my thing. It's just too...real. I also don't believe that a boy and a girl can be friends without one or both of them wanting more, but that's more of a personal moral/family background than mere taste. But I was reading Atlantic Wire's list of summer reads based off YA authors' recommendations, and of course, being the Maggie Stiefvater fangirl I am, I instantly zoned in on what she had listed. In particular, I was caught by the pretty pink cover of How to Say Goodbye in Robot (seriously, this is the main reason why Scholastic is tied for top of my dream publisher list - gorgeous cover work), and Maggie enthusiastically endorses it as one of those books that can be totally seen in your mind as a movie.

Just another piece of evidence to prove that Maggie is awesome.

You should know that already.

So, as our heroine, we have Bea. She's just moved to a new town with her 'rents (both of whom are strange and broken in their own right, in my honest opinion). The thing that caught my attention about Bea straight away was the way she reacts to her mother calling her heartless and a robot. I don't know about you, but I think most teenagers go through this constant second-guessing of themselves - if they're feeling the right way, reacting the right way, thinking the right things as everyone else. Bea's really considering herself as a robot girl really touched a chord somehow, somewhere.

Of course, a true-to-life teenage girl like Bea can't just wind up with a cliche friend who crushes on Zac Efron and paints her toenails Sunset Passion. So, we are introduced to Ghost Boy - a.k.a. Jonah, who is pretty much ignored by the rest of the student body, but has some hidden skeletons in his family closet and a mutual passion that pulls Bea into his small, isolated world.

A radio station.

And not just any radio station. A quirky, local station, run by a man that calls himself Herb. A station where it isn't unusual for callers to ring in for an evening ride on "the magic carpet", or read poems they wrote themselves, or obsess over Elvis Presley. It's a little family of its own, united by being outsiders, for embracing their quirks whether others would rather hide it away and be part of the norm.

Yes. You really want to read this now, don't you?

Even in a novel, though, friendship doesn't run smoothly. The world doesn't stop turning for happy little moments of mutual radio-station listens or ditching prom or art contests. The ways that Bea and Jonah get pulled in opposite directions are depicted so accurately, it can't help but make your heart ache. In particular, Jonah's struggle with his father over his brain-dead twin, Matthew, really made me wish that it would all work out, because it's fiction and it's just got to have a happy ending...right?

I won't tell you whether it does or doesn't, but I will tell you that it is a bit sad. Definite hanky warning for this one.

The one thing I must return to in this novel, again and again, is how the author keeps it real. Of course, I did wish she'd avoided the cliche underage drinking party, where the protagonist wanders about bemoaning his/her existence and wondering why he/she even came and seeing the guy/girl he/she is/was interested in macking on another person. But besides that little snag, the rest of it pretty much is authentic. Bea and Jonah could be that quiet pair in the cafeteria you don't say hi to, or idling away their time on the lawn of some closed appliance store, speaking to themselves in voices that don't carry to your curious ears.

It's the beauty of being a YA writer when you can actually see these things come to life, on a sheet of white paper. Maggie is right. How to Say Goodbye in Robot would make a wonderful movie.

Just, again, I feel the need to warn you: it's not all rainbows and butterflies. I felt the need to smack one or both of Bea's parents at different intervals while I read. Jonah's dad isn't much better, and the high school kids...well, I think after reading YA for a while, you know how some of them can behave. And don't expect all the i's to be dotted and t's crossed and everyone to drift away on a breeze of soft, scented air and bright smiles as the credits roll across the screen.

This is not a Disney Channel Original movie sort of wonderful.

I think you have to read it for yourself to see what I mean. I can't think of how else to explain it.

I still wish she'd made Jonah a girl, though.

Good Points
It's just so...real.
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

How to Say Goodbye..or Not

When I finished this book, I wasn't sure what to think. I just sat around trying to piece together my feelings. It's weird, and I really didn't like Jonah. He drug Bea into this hole that neither of them could find an easy way to get out. I shouldn't hate this kid, because he does have a bad home life. They both do. But it still doesn't give him a right to drag other people into his pain. He was selfish, if anything.
So read this book if you like deep, beautifully written, traumatic stories.

Was this review helpful to you? 
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Serafina and the Splintered Heart
The storms are coming... Something has happened to Serafina. She...
 
0.0
 
5.0 (1)
The Little Book of Little Activists
A celebration of political activism by America's youngest citizens--our children....
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Together at Midnight
What does it really mean to be kind . ....
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
Fuecho Y Pablo
Pablo's attempt to get his best friend Ugly Cat a...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Little i
A charming, suspenseful, and wholly original picture book about the...
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Dragonfly Song
The girl has had many selves in her short life....
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Project Semicolon: Your Story Isn't Over
For fans of PostSecret, Humans of New York, and If...
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Forest of a Thousand Lanterns (Rise of the Empress #1)
An East Asian fantasy reimagining of The Evil Queen legend...
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
Murder Among the Stars
After being framed for attempted murder, Lulu Kelly has...
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
Christmas Stories
Join the original pioneer girl in this Little House chapter...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Somebody's Baby
Ever since Sloan won a reality singing competition, her...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Enhanced
Seventeen-year-old Mana has found and rescued her mother, but...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
DC Super Heroes World's Greatest Jokes: Featuring Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and more!
Hundreds of laugh-out-loud jokes featuring Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Squishy Taylor and the Bonus Sisters
Why does Squishy have to share everything with her new...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Wood
After her father goes missing in the woods that...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
release.jpg
nspired by Judy Blume’s Forever and Virginia Woolf’s Mrs....
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

Genuine Fraud
 
3.3
"GENUINE FRAUD by E. Lockhart is a character-driven thriller that is told in reverse chronological order. In essence, the book..."
Together at Midnight
 
3.3
"A cute and bittersweet story of young love at the wrong time. The story: Kendall has just returned..."
The Thousandth Floor
 
4.0
"Everything about this book is so glamorous, dramatic, and intriguing. Right down to that stunning cover. Katharine McGee..."
Forest of a Thousand Lanterns (Rise of the Empress #1)
 
3.3
"It took me a long time to finish Forest of a Thousand Lanterns, but overall, this book turned out to..."
Wonder Woman: Warbringer (DC Icons #1)
 
5.0
"I finally got a chance to sit down and read this one and I was not disappointed. It definitely..."
The Girl in the Tower
 
4.7
"This follow up to The Bear and the Nightingale is just as stunning as its predecessor. We met Vasya as..."
When Dimple Met Rishi
 
3.3
"A contemporary YA romance—heavy on the romance—with an Indian-American take on the attraction of opposites. The story is told..."
It's Not Me, It's You
 
3.7
"'It's Not Me, It's You' by Stephanie Kate Strohm provides a unique and somewhat irregular look into the dynamics of..."
You're Weird: A Creative Journal for Misfits, Oddballs, and Anyone Else Who's Uniquely Awesome
 
5.0
"'You're Weird: A Creative Journal for Misfits, Oddballs, and Anyone Else Who's Uniquely Awesome' by Kate Peterson will allow anyone..."
The Riddle (Pellinor #2)
 
4.7
"THE RIDDLE by Alison Croggon is the second in the author's Pellinor series, and it picks up right where book..."
A Taxonomy of Love
 
3.3
"A story of love that spans a childhood. The story: Spencer is a lonely boy with Tourette's when he..."
The Selection Coloring Book
 
4.0
"Selection fans get excited! THE SELECTION COLORING BOOK, based on the series by Kiera Cass, is getting ready to celebrate..."
The Memory of Things
 
4.0
"When I first found out that THE MEMORY OF THINGS by Gae Polisner was set in the immediate days following..."
Mean Girls
 
4.0
"MEAN GIRLS (2004), the cult film phenomenon starring Lindsay Lohan, Rachel McAdams, Amanda Seyfried, and Tina Fey, is now a..."
Dune (Dune Chronicles #1)
 
5.0
"Its a classic. Not much more I can add."
On A LARP
 
3.3
"In ON A LARP, Sid is known to be a hacker after a past school prank, and she's a good..."
Code Name Verity
 
4.3
"The year is 1943. The setting locations are England, and Nazi-occupied France. The book is told in a..."
Good and Gone
 
3.7
"Road tripping with a purpose, Good and Bad is a journey, the reader won't soon forget. Lexi's brother,..."
Glow
 
5.0
"'There's a certain kind of light that I should have been afraid of all along.' Radium was discovered..."
Release
 
4.0
"Wildly original--and completely realistic--Release is a whirlwind of a tale, one that will leave you both completely confused, yet satiated...."