Friendbots: Blink and Block Make a Wish

HarperAlley. (Friendbots: Bk. 1). Jun. 2021. 32p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780063049451; pap. $4.99. ISBN 9780063049444.
PreS-Gr 2–When Block, an earnest, purple, cube-shaped robot, observes Blink, an enthusiastic, blue, sphere-shaped bot, staring at the ground during recess, Block’s curiosity is piqued. Turns out Blink is using their antenna to scan for gold (and silver and gems). A skeptical Block follows along, setting the record straight each time Blink thinks they’ve found treasure (no, a bottle cap and a gum wrapper aren’t quite what they’re looking for) and suggesting tools, such as a shovel or gold pan, that might help. Blink admires Block’s knowledge, and when a penny is found, Blink suggests making a wish. Success! Blink does a happy dance, announcing that the wish came true. Seeing no gems or gold, Block disagrees, and now it’s Blink’s turn to set the record straight—Blink wished for a new friend. After quick introductions, the pals head out to look for treasure together. Themes of friendship, acceptance, and shared adventures combine for a relatable tale. The colorful but uncluttered panels pull readers along with each new discovery. The dialogue is a well-crafted mix of conflict and humor. A small butterfly surreptitiously accompanies the two robots throughout, starting on the cover, and observant readers will have fun locating this quiet third friend.
VERDICT This new robot team will garner fans among beginning readers seeking comics. Look out for a second installment, Blink and Block Bug Each Other, slated for this fall.

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