The Strange Case of Origami Yoda

Tom Angleberger, Author . Abrams/Amulet $12.95 (141p) ISBN 978-0-8109-8425-7

“Is Origami Yoda real?” is the question that plagues sixth-grader Tommy and drives the plot of this snappy debut. From one perspective, Origami Yoda is a finger puppet that offers cryptic but oddly sage advice to Tommy and his classmates. From another, he is simply the “green paperwad” animated by Tommy's misfit friend, Dwight, who “wear[s] shorts with his socks pulled up above his knees” and stares into space “like a hypnotized chicken.” Compiling a series of funny, first-person accounts of Yoda's wisdom from his friends, Tommy hopes to solve this mystery to determine whether to trust Yoda's advice about asking a certain girl to dance. Angleberger peppers his chapters with spot-on boy banter, humorously crude Captain Underpants–style drawings, and wisecrack asides that comically address the social land mines of middle school. Tommy confronts the ethical dilemma of standing up for the weird kid and the angst of school dances: “My hands were shaking and my stomach was excited like the time my dad accidentally drove into a fire hydrant.” But with enigmatic counsel like “Cheetos for everyone you must buy,” Yoda keeps the mystery alive. Ages 8–12. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 03/15/2010
Release date: 03/01/2010
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