Your Robot Dog Will Die (Hardcover)

By Arin Greenwood

Soho Teen, 9781616958398, 208pp.

Publication Date: April 17, 2018

List Price: 18.99*
* Individual store prices may vary.


Fusing the heart of Julie of the Wolves with the imagination of Little Brother and Ship Breaker, this speculative YA is a must-read for any dog lover.

Seventeen-year-old Nano Miller was born and raised on Dog Island: home to Mechanical Tail, the company behind lifelike replacements for “man’s best friend.” The island is also home to the last living dogs, all but extinct. When a global genetic experiment went awry and canines stopped wagging their tails, mass hysteria ensued and the species was systematically euthanized. Here, they are studied in a natural and feral state.

Nano’s life has become a cycle of annual heartbreak. Every spring, Mechanical Tail gives her the latest robot dog model to test, only to tear it from her arms a year later. This year is complicated by another heartbreak: the loss of her brother, Billy, who recently vanished without a trace. But nothing can prepare her for a discovery that upends everything she’s taken for granted: it’s a living puppy that miraculously wags its tail. There is no way she’s letting this dog go.

About the Author

Arin Greenwood is an animal writer and former lawyer living in St. Petersburg, Florida, with her husband, Ray; their dog, Murray; and their cats, Elf, Jack, and Chappy. Arin was animal welfare editor for The Huffington Post, and now writes about dogs, cats, and other critters for The Today Show, The Washington Post, Slate, Creative Loafing, The Dodo, the American Bar Association Journal, and other publications. She is also the author of Save the Enemy.

Praise For Your Robot Dog Will Die

A Children's Book Council 'Hot Off the Press' Pick for April
YALSA's 2019 Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers
Winner of Creative Loafing's 'Best of the Bay' Award for Best Local author

Praise for Your Robot Dog Will Die

"This book is weird, and I mean that in the most complimentary way possible."
—Eric Smith, Paste Magazine

"Our most anticipated indie YA."
—Barnes & Noble Teen Blog

"The novel explores the gap between human intention and impact . . . A provocative reflection on humanity's increasingly damaging effects on the natural world."
—Kirkus Reviews

"A thought-provoking story line . . . Quirky details and imaginative tech characterize the simultaneously futuristic and off-the-grid environment of Dog Island."

"There is no putting down this fun, quirky read." 
—The New Barker 

"An unusual, quirky book with unexpected twists and turns . . . it kept me turning the pages."
—Pet Connection Magazine

"One of the most thought-provoking books I have read this year . . . [an] engrossing tale that, while exploring brutal actions, ends in a way guaranteed to warm hearts."
—Best Friends Magazine

"A really fun book about hope and discovery."
—Book Riot, "Hey YA" Podcast

"Skirts the line between science fiction and speculative fiction . . . a unique story well-suited to reluctant readers."
—YALSA's 2019 Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers

"It's an intense read, sure to leave an impression, and readers will likely have difficulty getting Dog Island out of their heads."
—Shelf Awareness

"This book definitely creates an interesting philosophical conundrum. Readers will enjoy Greenwood tackling ethical dilemmas around life, suffering and what it means to take care of the world around us."
—RT Book Reviews

"A very unique approach . . . suspenseful and exciting!"
—Seattle Book Review

“Tacitly challenges our notions of kindness and our world view of bioethics . . . The way she weaves this delightfully heartbreaking, comically sobering dystopian story sets her work apart from most dystopian YA.”
—Creative Loafing

"Fast-paced and entertaining . . . Arin has a deft touch."
—Marianas Variety

"A meaningful read for teens and adults of all ages." 

"I loved the book! It's so well done—I was hooked from the get-go. Plus, if you're conversant with the world of animal welfare, it's hard not to see Your Robot Dog Will Die as a gripping allegory." 
—Duncan Strauss, host of "Talking Animals" 

"It is a great read, and she is a brilliant writer."
—Raise the Woof Podcast

"It’s a perfect beach read . . . It poses a humongous question: What is suffering? But author Arin Greenwood delivers her response in a funny, thought-provoking, and quick-moving novel."
—Oh My Dog! blog

"This novel is a perfect choice for animal lovers, adventure lovers, and those who enjoy books with unique plots. Anyone who rescues animals? It’s a must-read!"
—Pamela Kramer, Huffington Post contributor and animal advocate 

"Robot Dog weds sci-fi adventure to a heart-tugging human/canine love story, and the result is an unforgettable read. I adored this book and couldn’t put it down!"
—Gwen Cooper, New York Times bestselling author of Homer's Odyssey and My Life in a Cat House

"Funny, fresh, and self-assured, Your Robot Dog Will Die is a charming, gripping speculative look at the darker side of animal activism. Read this book! Your human brain will thank you."
—Micol Ostow, bestselling author of Mean Girls

"A wild little tale that dances on the edge of your heartstrings . . . This book had me overcome with feelings of hope, anguish, fear, and inspiration. Arin's distinct ability to capture the world that we are careening toward if we are not careful left me feverishly turning pages in hopes that there is a way to save us all from such a bleak future, a world without our best furry friends. I could not put this book down!"
—Deidre Franklin, founder of Pinups for Pit Bulls and author of The Pit Bull Life: A Dog Lover's Companion

"Satisfying and wistful, with an ending that will thrill every animal rescuer out there. Impossible to put down."
—Debby McMullen, author of How Many Dogs: Using Positive Reinforcement to Manage a Multiple Dog Household

"Your Robot Dog Will Die is a fascinating and well-written novel that will make both lovers of dystopian fiction and animals want to wag their tail."
—Annie England Noblin, author of Sit! Stay! Speak! and Pupcakes

"Arin Greenwood tackles animal welfare challenges like no one has before. Do we save animals? Do we challenge the way things are and have always been? According to Greenwood, the answer is yes. And I could not agree more."  
—Shannon Glenn, Executive Director of My Pit Bull is Family

"Your Robot Dog Will Die is best read with a warm puppy in your lap. Don't have one? This book will make you want to head to your nearest shelter and pick up a furry companion. Everyone who loves a rescue animal should read this smart YA novel."
—Erin Ruberry, editor of the "In Better News" newsletter

“A fun and engaging romp through a slightly upended future . . . deals with some of our most pressing animal-ethics issues with lovable dogs (real and not real).”
—Susan Houser, Out the Front Door blog

"This story was definitely different than any others that I’ve read previously."
—Chapter 2 Books (Hudson, WI)

Praise for Arin Greenwood

“Savvy, fun and fast-paced, full of twists and turns that you won’t see coming.”
—Jodi Lynn Anderson, New York Times bestselling author of Peaches, May Bird, and Tiger Lily

“Polished writing, crackling dialog, and irresistible characters . . . Serves up surprises from start to finish.”
—Sophie Littlefield, nationally bestselling author of Garden of Stones

“Thrilling, chilling, funny and true to life.”
—Gary Shteyngart, New York Times bestselling author of Super Sad True Love Story

“Full of dead ends, sharp turns and swerving mishaps this mystery novel is a nonstop, high-speed chase for the truth.”
—The New Orleans Advocate

 “Readers will be pulled by Zoey’s strong inner compass and martial-arts
Prowess . . . Readers of detective, spy, and crime novels, as well as Ayn Rand fans, will find tidbits to enjoy as Zoey and family prevail against the odds.” 

 “An intricate tale of confusion and loss as Zoey attempts to peel away the mysteries surrounding her family and her unusual upbringing . . . This is good for ravenous fans of thrillers with a twist.” 

"Part mystery-thriller, part coming-of-age tale, and part romance with a pinch of the paranormal."
—School Library Journal

“Reminiscent of A Wrinkle in Time, Greenwood’s debut for teens twists and turns with mysterious men, real bullets and numerous candidates for worst parent ever . . . [Readers] with a philosophical bent may find references to Kant, Nietzsche and Ayn Rand entertaining.”
Kirkus Reviews