Speed Interview with Carolyn Crimi, Author of Weird Little Robots
The Children’s Book Review | September 26, 2019
The Children’s Book Review: Which five words best describe Weird Little Robots?
Carolyn Crimi: Quirky, magical, tender, scientific, funny.
Can you share a highlight from the book? Or maybe your thoughts on, or an excerpt of, your favorite sentence, paragraph, or page?
I happen to like the prologue a lot. It sets the magical, whimsical tone. It also gives us a taste of what Penny Rose is like and what she’s struggling with, all in two pages. I listened to the Edward Scissorhands soundtrack while I wrote the book. The theme song in that movie seems especially perfect for the prologue. I like playing it in the background when I do readings.
If you had to take a vacation with one of the characters from Weird Little Robots, who would it be? Why?
I could probably fit all five little robots in my suitcase, so I’m going to cheat a little and say the five robots. They’re funny and cute, and they’d make me laugh. Also? One of the robots, Data, can see into the future, so she could tell me exactly when I’d need to apply more sunscreen.
What has been the best reaction from a reader, so far?
Jarrett Lerner said he “couldn’t put it down,” which thrilled me to the tips of my toes. I think suspense is especially hard to get a feel for in your own work. You know what’s going to happen, which makes your own book quite easy to put down.
What’s on your nightstand? Any books?
In addition to the useless bottle of CBD oil, which doesn’t seem to be doing a darn thing for my insomnia, I’ve been dipping into the book JOYFUL: THE SURPRISING POWER OF ORDINARY THINGS TO CREATE EXTRAORDINARY HAPPINESS by Margaret Fetell Lee. I like books that you don’t necessarily need to read sequentially, and the subject of this book—how to make your surroundings more joyful—fascinated me. This book validates what I’ve known for years, and that is that things like pom-poms and confetti make life more fun.
For your writing energy: sugar or salt, tea or coffee?
Sugar all day long. The Keto Diet absolutely terrifies me.
Veeery strong coffee in the morning. Oh how I love coffee! I actually start thinking about how good it will taste the night before.
Writing tools: computer, pen and paper, or all of the above?
It all depends on what I’m writing. For picture books, I start out with pen and paper. Once I’ve gotten the bones of the story written, I type it up. With longer books I’ll use a notebook for back story notes and chapter outlines and a computer for everything else.
Can you tell us one more thing we may not know about Weird Little Robots, your writing style, or yourself?
A writer friend whom I greatly admire told me that she often sticks random things in her books that she loves. It keeps her inspired. That seemed simple enough, so I took this tip to heart when writing the book and made a list of all the strange, quirky things that I’m passionate about. Miniature robots? Sure, why not. A magical squirrel? Toss it in and see what happens. Abandoned shacks in the middle of the woods? Yes, please! It’s like a Carolyn Crimi Stew, only a lot tastier than anything I’d actually cook.
Written by Carolyn Crimi
Illustrated by Corinna Luyken
Publisher’s Synopsis: When two science-savvy girls create an entire robot world, they don’t expect the robots to come alive. But life may be a bit more magical than they thought.
Eleven-year-old Penny Rose has just moved to a new town, and so far the robots she builds herself are her only company. But with just a bit of magic, everything changes: she becomes best friends with Lark, has the chance to join a secret science club, and discovers that her robots are alive. Penny Rose hardly remembers how lonely she used to feel. But then a fateful misstep forces her to choose between the best friend she’s always hoped for and the club she’s always dreamed of, and in the end it may be her beloved little robots that pay the price. Quirky and wonderful, this illustrated chapter book from Carolyn Crimi and Corinna Luyken shows that making your own space and a true friend in the world is a kind of magic all its own.
“[A]uthor Crimi infuses this unassuming transitional novel with compassion, humor, and a refreshing storyline in which girls organically weave a love for science into their everyday lives. Illustrations by Luyken add to the guileless sensibility. A contemplation on the magic of friendship told with sweetness, simplicity, and science.”
“This quirkily inventive middle grade debut by Crimi (I Am the Boss of This Chair) introduces Penny Rose, a shy 11-year-old who has made no friends in her new town…In affecting illustrations, Luyken (The Book of Mistakes) successfully captures the heroines’ likable sincerity, ingenuity, and mutual affection, as well as the robots’ spunky personalities.”
Ages 8-12 | Publisher: Candlewick | October 1, 2019 | ISBN-13: 978-0763694937
Buy the Book
About the Author
Carolyn Crimi enjoys snacking, pugs, Halloween, and writing, although not necessarily in that order. Over the years she has published 15 funny books for children, including Don’t Need Friends, Henry and theBuccaneer Bunnies, Where’s My Mummy?, There Might Be Lobsters, and I Am The Boss of This Chair. Weird Little Robots is her first novel.
Enter for a chance to win a copy of Carolyn Crimi’s Weird Little Robots!
Three (3) winners receive:
- A copy of Weird Little Robots!
Giveaway begins September 26, 2019 at 12:01 A.M. MT and ends October 26, 2019 at 11:59 P.M. MT.
How To Enter
- Complete the entry form below.
- Enter once daily (optional).
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- Weird Little Robots book giveaway sponsored by Candlewick.
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- Three (3) winners receive: A copy of Weird Little Robots
- Odds of winning will depend upon the total number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.
- Winners will be selected at random on or about October 29, 2019.
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- Prizes courtesy of Candlewick.
This speed interview with Carolyn Crimi, author of Weird Little Robots, was conducted by Bianca Schulze. For similar books and articles, follow along with our content tagged with Books About Making New Friends, Carolyn Crimi, Corinna Luyken, Illustrated Chapter Books, Magic, Moving House, and Robots. Be sure to follow along with out Speed Interview series, too.