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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Most Classics Are Better With Robots

Last night I had a lot of fun speaking at The Bookstall in Winnetka about the trends of 2015, 2016, and all the 2016 books I was excited about.  Afterwards a bunch of us sat down for dinner and drinks and the conversation turned, as is natural, to robots.  I had mentioned in my talk earlier that as a 9-year-old I had avoided any and all books that were potentially “meaningful” and that I sometimes have to fight that same instinct today.  A little later we started talking about robots.  To be more specific, we were talking about what happens when you replace a word in a book’s title with the word “robot”.  That’s when it suddenly occurred to me that the books I had avoided in the past would have been far more palatable to my young self, had they contained a significant uptick in robots.


  • Julie of the Robots
  • Island of the Blue Robots
  • Robots to Terabithia
  • Robot Tremain
  • Are You There, Robot? It’s Me Margaret

Then I started thinking about adult titles.  Again, robots have a tendency to make everything better.


robot_blog– Moby Robot

– Robots and Prejudice

– Remembrance of Robots Past

– Robot in the Rye


The moral of the story is that I need more robots in my reading fare.  Also, that silly season has officially begun and I need to start doing some more serious posts here.

For the record, I wouldn’t mind hearing some additional serious-books-improved-with-robot suggestions on either the juv or adult side of things.  YA is also acceptable (after all, you cannot tell me Twilight isn’t cooler if the vampires are robots).

About Elizabeth Bird

Elizabeth Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.


  1. Well, ROMEO AND ROBOT, of course.

  2. Yukari M. says:

    While Are You There, Robot? It’s Me Margaret sounds good, I switched it to Are You There God? It’s Me, Robot … sounds kinda philosophical about AI, no?

    How about:
    Don’t Let the Robot Drive the Bus!
    Robot’s Web

    • Elizabeth Bird says:

      Half the fun of these is figuring out where to put the robot, you’re right. Robot of the Blue Dolphins would also have been acceptable.

  3. Indeed, robots DO make everything better!
    The Robot Who Wants to Fall Asleep
    Portrait of an Artist as a Young Robot (apologies to Joyce)

  4. Since we’re coming off of Newbery Season, how about…

    The One & Only Robot
    Shadow of a Robot
    The Higher Power of Robot
    Dear Mr. Robot

  5. The Robot of Truth comes out about even with The Porcupine of Truth, I think. I’ll Give You the Robot is perhaps a better version of I’ll Give You the Sun (though I love the book so much that even robots cannot improve it.) For classics: The Once and Future Robot.

  6. The Bronze Robot
    The Robot of Blackbird Pond
    The Matchlock Robot

  7. Little Robot in the Big Woods

  8. For we Canadians how about:
    Robot of Green Gables
    Newer cry robot
    Paperbag robot.

  9. Joseph Miller says:

    Here’s a few:

    Last Stop on Robot Street
    The Princess and the Robot
    Leo: A Robot Story
    Robots Meet Snow
    The Robot Ate Your Sandwich
    Goodbye Robot
    The Thing about Robots
    The Robot That Saved My Life
    Circus Robotus
    Roller Robot
    Robot vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
    The Hired Robot
    All the Bright Robots
    The Robots Who Challenged Hitler

    Okay… I should stop now.

  10. For the grownups:

    How Green Was My Robot
    Robots of the Purple Sage
    A Tale of Two Robot Cities
    The Robot Who Came in from the Cold

    For the kids (Newbery oldies):

    Robot Hill
    It’s Like This, Robot
    I, Robot Juan de Pareja
    The Twenty-One Robot Balloons

    I’d better stop now too.

  11. Charlie and the Robot Factory
    Beezus and Robot
    Mr. Popper’s Robots
    Robot Crusoe
    From the Mixed-Up Robots of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
    The Lion, the Witch and the Robot
    Now We Are Robots
    Five Little Robots and How They Grew
    A Robot in the Attic
    Number the Robots

    And for young readers:
    Pat the Robot
    Cloudy with a Chance of Robots
    Chicken Soup with Robots
    Alexander and the Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Robot