If: Ball, Then: Catch

Katherine Schoepp
CanamBooks (2020)
ISBN: 9781777124120
Reviewed by Lydia (age 6) for Reader Views Kids (1/21)

The story “If: Ball, Then: Catch” by Katherine Schoepp is about a girl named Dot who lives in the future and wants a real puppy as a pet. Where she lives, there are real dogs and robot dogs, too. She is used to robots at her house; she has lots of them. It is now Dot’s birthday, and she hopes that she will get a real puppy because she has been doing chores and behaving. Dot opens her present, and it’s a robot dog! She is sad at first, but her mom tells her that she has to take care of the robot dog before getting a real one. Dot thinks this will be easy, but it really isn’t. 

This book is interesting because it’s about robots and how they are different than real things, like people and animals. I have read other books or seen shows before when someone has to prove that they can take care of a pet. This story is fun because there is a robot from Dot’s house that tells you about robots. I didn’t know much about robots before, but I found out that they have joints as I do. They also see differently than me with cameras and lights instead of eyeballs. There is a robot club at my school, so if they do it again when I get older, I will know about robots.

I really like the pictures in the book. There are lots of bright colors on the pages, and Dot’s hair is cool to look at- it’s big and different colors! I want hair like that. I also would like lots of robots at my house to do things for me. I like the part of the story when Dot told the robot dog to count the cats because I really like cats! I like what Dot decides at the end of the story, and I think that kids of any age will like to read or listen to this book.

Note from Mom: “If: Ball Then: Catch” is an informative book about robots that would be great for students in a robot club or those merely interested. As Lydia said, the illustrations are catchy to the eyes. I like that it is largely about problem-solving, working for what you want, and deciding what is most important to you. Regarding the title, the concept of playing fetch with a dog is common and well understood, but it was never specifically mentioned in the story; this seemed odd to me and something that could have easily been incorporated to tie everything together. Overall, this is a great book to read. 

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