Saturday, June 2, 2012

The Strange Case of Origami Yoda by Tom Angleberger

I always loved reading the children's books nominated for awards in the states where I lived. This book won awards in 2 of those states this year.

Winner:   Texas Bluebonnet Award, 2011-2012
                  Rhode Island Children’s Book Award, 2012   

The Strange Case of Origami Yoda is a case file written by Tommy, a middle school boy, with help from a few of his friends. Dwight, a social outcast, has a talent for origami and creates a surprisingly interesting Yoda who is able to answer a variety of questions with some degree of accuracy. Since Dwight is seemingly clueless about most things Yoda advises on, Yoda has to be the real “force,” right? Various students recount their interactions with Yoda to discover the truth. And if Yoda is real, can Tommy trust his advice on a really important question?

I wasn’t sure about this book based on the title, but once I started reading I was hooked! The text flows smoothly and the little illustrations sprinkled throughout add some extra fun. I could easily picture the different characters and felt for them as they tried to interpret Yoda’s wisdom. There were some common middle school relationship themes that rang true, though they weren’t elaborated too much. I also liked that there were directions for making your own origami Yoda at the back of the book. I haven’t tried it yet, but I just might! There was also a teaser for a sequel that I’m going to have to request from the library.

I didn’t get to read all of the other nominated books for the Texas and Rhode Island awards, but I’m not at all surprised The Strange Case of Origami Yoda won in both states! Definitely a 5 star book!

Update: I recently read book 2: Darth Paper Strikes Back and it was equally awesome. In fact, after I finished my husband saw it and read it (quickly, I might add!). He LOVED it! Now I get to go back to the library to get Origami Yoda again...and we're both looking forward to the next installment, which should come out in August 2012. Thanks, Tom Angleberger!

What question would you ask Yoda? What are your middle school memories? What award does your state have for children's books?


  1. I should mention this to my husband as he's a Star Wars fan :)

    1. Definitely! I could hear my husband attempting the Yoda voice as I read. The other books in the series are Darth Paper Strikes Back (that looks like the first book--not sure if they should be read in order or not) and The Secret of the Fortune Wookiee (release date: August 2012). If nothing else, the titles should make him laugh!