Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Review: The Bot That Scott Built by Kim Norman

by Kim Norman
Illustrated by Agnese Baruzzi
Sterling Children's Books
Picture Book 
ages 3 to 7
32 pages

When Scott builds a bot, a bippity-bot, sparks fly . . . and his entire classroom goes wild. Before long, fiery ants and carnivorous plants, a freaky frog, a big-bellied boa, and an exploding "volcano" have wreaked total havoc. Can Scott's bot, which started it all, manage the mess? Cheers for the handy hero! A cumulative story with fun that grows and grows and GROWS.

This funny and tongue-twisting story is a great read-aloud book for the whole family.


Full of gizmos, gadgetry and whimsical rhyme, this science fair adventure places inventions in a whole new light. . .and little constructors will love it.

The book starts before the story really even gets underway. Hammers, nuts, bolts, propellers and many other parts and do-dads, which bring small inventor's imaginations into swing, decorate the inside of both covers. When the title page appears, Scott is already drilling and building, caught up in his own construction world. And the scene is set.

It's the day of the science fair, and the kids have set up experiments through-out the room, things young scientists might even recognize. On center stage, taking his turn in the spotlight, is Scott and his bippity bot--and saying that already brings a smile to the face. A short explanation through rhyme soon turns into disaster. And it mounts and mounts into humorous chaos pure. These rhymes never skip a beat and dance around wonderful word combinations like 'the freaky frog from the bathtub bog...'. By the end, it's a hilarious mouthful.

It's easy for young listeners to understand, and fun to follow the silly phrases, while the illustrations offer the perfect backdrop. They are colorful, hold lovely details, which call for attention again and again, and incorporate the emotions and situations well enough that just flipping through the pages will tell a story all on its own. 

Young listeners and readers discover science from a whole new angle, which is sure to inspire the creator in them with all of its fun. And if nothing else, it's simply a joy to read, and not just for the kids. 

All about. . .

Kim Norman is  the author of several books for young readers, including This Old Van; Ten on the Sled; If It’s Snowy and You Know It, Clap Your Paws!; Puddle Pug; and Crocodaddy (all Sterling). Kim lives in Smithfield, VA and is available for interview. Visit her at and follower her on twitter at @KimNormanAuthor.

Agnese Baruzzi works as a book illustrator and graphic designer and has illustrated several picture books for publishers in Italy, the UK, Japan, Portugal, the US, and South Korea. Agnese lives and works in a little wooden cottage nestled in the hills near Bologna, Italy.

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