Hilo: The Boy Who Crashed to Earth by Judd Winick

Published: 2015

Genre: middle grade graphic novel

Length: 192 pages

Setting: Earth, present day

Interest: I had seen it reviewed somewhere online (I forgot to record where since I went straight to the library page to request the book). I’m always on the lookout for good graphic novels (the whole family enjoys them) and this looked like it fit the bill.

Summary: D.J. is a perfectly ordinary boy in a family full of people who excel at something. When his best friend, Gina, moves away, he’s left with no special talents. However, he is curious and brave enough to investigate something that landed from outer space. It turns out to be Hilo, a boy robot who needs to learn how to blend in and remember what his mission is. D.J. and Gina help Hilo as he slowly regains his memory and has to fight evil robots Razorwark has sent to kill Hilo (and everyone else on Earth).

Final thoughts: A fun, action-filled story that we all enjoyed. It’s full of humor that can be juvenile at times (Hilo finds burping hilarious, and eating leads to several humorous situations). I loved D.J.’s attempts at distraction with the rest of his family (Louis has a girlfriend!). The underlying message for D.J. is that he is special by helping his friends, not by any skills he might be able to display. Even Hilo is able to move past his fears when his friends are threatened. It ends on a big cliff-hanger, so we’re all waiting impatiently for the next book.

The images are very comic booky, with lots of primary colors for Hilo and his friends. While Hilo is blue-eyed and blond-haired, D.J. is Asian and Gina is black, so we do see some skin tone variety in the story (I always consider this to be a plus). All of the action is robot on robot, so there’s no blood. Overall, a high-quality graphic novel suitable for the whole family.

Title comes from: The main character, Hilo

If you’re interested in purchasing the book, you can click on the cover image to follow an Amazon affiliate link to the book and thanks for supporting my blog!


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