August 19, 2010

The Strange Case of Origami Yoda

Don't tell on me, but I took this from my book fair shelf, read it and brought it back.  I'm so glad I did, too because I hand-sold a number of them to kids who were looking at Wimpy Kid and N.E.R.D.S. books.  One girl picked it up and her mom wrinkled her nose but I convinced her it was good.

It's the alleged "case files" put together by the main character.  A dweeb in their middle school has created an origami Yoda finger puppet and does a terrible Yoda impression when he answers questions you put too it.  The weird thing is that the dweeb can barely dress himself and has no social graces, yet the Yoda answers are sometimes spot on.  Well, at least to middle schoolers.

It's no surprise that the main character's major dilemma is wondering if a certain female of the species likes him.  So he's gathering all the "evidence" and testimonials he can to see if the Yoda puppet is really giving good advice.  Because you know, talking to Each short chapter is "typed" in a different font, as they're all from different characters,  and include wonderfully silly doodles.  They each end with the commentary by the main character and a skeptical friend of his who isn't buying it.  The book includes, of course, directions for folding your own origami Yoda (though not the freaky cool one on the cover, I don't think).  I've already seen a few of these popping up at my school!

I had fun with this one and I think would have enjoyed it in 5th-7th grades.  The characters seem genuine and the underlying theme of trying to be nice to each other is a great one but it doesn't hit you over the head.  I'll get it for my library and show it to 5th graders looking for something after Wimpy Kid.