Sunday, November 21, 2021

Robin Robin by Dan Ojari and Mikey Please, illustrated by Briony May Smith

Robin Robin by Dan Ojari and Mikey Please,
illustrated by Briony May Smith
Red Comet Press, 2021, 32 pages     

When a robin egg falls out of its nest, landing in a garbage dump, the newly hatched bird is found by a family of mice who decide to adopt it, naming her Robin Robin and taking her back to their burrow. The burrow is warm and cozy and Robin quickly settles in, listening to the mice talk about crumbs - all kinds of crumbs, the crumbier the better. Crumbs are always a delicious treat, but in order to enjoy them, they have to sneak into the house where the Who-mans live, which would be easy except for one thing - a great big mean cat also lives there. Nevertheless, they all decide to sneak into the house and gets some crumbs to feast on. 

There is just one problem - it's not easy for a bird to be as quiet as a mouse. Naturally, she always attracts the cat's attention and has to quickly make a run for the back door to escape. One night, around Christmas time, Robin runs right into the wings of a Magpie while escaping the cat. Robin may think she is a mouse, but Magpie recognizes her as a fellow bird and takes her home to his tree house.

After Robin explains why she was in the house, Magpie tells her about the Chrim-Cross Star that the Who-mens put on top of a spikey old tree up once a year, and how, after making a wish, the Who-mens get anything they want the next morning. Maybe if Robin and her mouse family could get the Chrim-Cross Star, they could all get their wishes in the morning, too. Robin would be a real mouse, Magpie would get all kinds of treasures for his tree house, and the mice would have all the crumbs they could want. There's just one hitch - and it isn't the cat. 

This is such a heartwarming story about identity, inclusion, and family with plenty of humor but also a serious side to it. Robin is a jolly little bird, full of determination and pluck. She never gives up trying to be "as quiet as a mouse" despite being a bird. I loved how Robin discovers her true self, which is way better than the noisy, clumsy mouse she thought she was, and ultimately more useful for her mouse family and their crumb appetite. And I think she found a real mentor in Magpie. I'm sure young readers will love the illustrations, too. They are bright, bold, and colorful, with lots of detail to explore. 

Robin Robin is a wonderful holiday story, but one kids will want to read all year round. Don't be surprised if it becomes a family classic. 
Meet the Authors

Dan Ojari and Mikey Please
 are co-founders of the BAFTA® Award-winning Parabella animation studio which is based in East London. They co-directed Robin Robin, the first production in association with Aardman and produced exclusively for Netflix. Together they authored an adaptation of the script of the Robin Robin holiday special to create the book. They both live in London. Learn more about Mikey Please at and Dan Ojari at

Meet the Illustrator

Briony May Smith is a British illustrator who has published titles in the US and the UK, including Stardust, written by Jeanne Willis (Nosy Crow, 2019). She also wrote and illustrated Imelda and the Goblin King (Flying Eye Books, 2015) and Margaret’s Unicorn (Schwartz and Wade, 2020), a Fall 2020 Indie Kids’ Next List selection. She lives in Devon, England. Learn more at


Red Comet Press

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Instagram: @redcometpressbooks

Thank you, Barbara Fisch at Blue Slip Media for providing me with a review copy of Robin Robin.

And now for some really exciting news: 
Chirpy little Robin and her adopted family of mice can be seen in a new animation holiday musical special from Netflix and Aardman Animation beginning November 24, 2021. 

1 comment:

  1. Hooray! Looks so awesome. Can't wait to read the book and see the Netflix special.


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