Thursday, August 31, 2017

Read, You Must: BB-8 On The Run

BB's Big Adventure!

What happened to BB-8 in The Force Awakens between fleeing from the First Order and meeting Rey?

Apparently quite a lot!

BB-8 On the Run is an exciting new picture book from Disney/Lucasfilm Press that reveals the droid’s mini-adventure on Jakku, the scenes that happen between-the-scenes from the movie.

Drew Daywalt, author of the very popular The Day the Crayons Quit, tells the tale of BB-8 facing danger, making friends, being a hero and much more. It is a very busy day for the rolling droid!

With vibrant, beautifully colourful paintings by illustrator Matt Myers on every page, the story feels as warm as the Jakku sunlight.

BB-8 starts his first day alone on Jakku by trying to be helpful but unfortunately rolls himself into a scavenger’s trap! The Teedo character who has BB-8 caught in a net in the film is the main villain here, and it turns out the alien and the droid have plenty of conflict in the day prior to meeting Rey.

Teedo rides a Luggabeast!
Teaming up with another trapped droid, the hulky but cartoonish F3-ZK (aka. “Fez”), BB-8 escapes and proceeds to flee further across the Jakku desert. New dilemmas seem to be over each sandy hill, and BB-8 never shies from the challenges. Never discouraged either, he spends his day doing random acts of kindness.

BB-8 On the Run is really a story about making choices, that every situation presents the choice to be selfless and help others. BB-8 knows his own mission is very important, but so is doing the right thing for those who need help. His owner Poe would be very proud of his decisions even when they seem dangerous!

After being “on the run” all day, BB-8 eventually encounters Teedo one more time, which leads to meeting Rey as seen in The Force Awakens. This leads to a satisfying conclusion for those who have seen the film and know how it all plays out. 

Young readers may not know what happens next, though, who the woman is or why Teedo is suddenly gone. Children unfamiliar with the movie (which was rated PG-13 for USA) will probably need the abrupt ending explained.

More important though, the story is an entertaining adventure, beautifully illustrated and full of kindness and humanity – not an easy thing to do for a story about a robot!

The tone here might be a little too cute for some adult tastes but BB-8 On the Run cleverly walks that line. For or those who remember the 1980's Droids cartoons and comics fondly you will likely really enjoy this as well!

Highly recommended!

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