As the title suggests, this board book shows people “buckling up” in all different types of vehicles and scenarios.
This book has a simple, straightforward setup: show people (and one dog) putting on seat belts in as many ways possible. The goal of the book appears to be convincing children that everyone does it—even astronauts—and they should, too. Zimmerman’s rhyming couplets have a nice rhythm, and each is followed by the same refrain: “One, two, three, CLICK!” The characters are diverse, although a preponderance presents white. The thin-lined, colorful backgrounds include details that younger preschoolers will enjoy finding, but they may prove hard for toddlers to decode. While the text makes unnecessary use of the gendered term “mailman,” Zimmerman does challenge some gender stereotypes: the farmer is a woman, as are the pilot and the fire chief. What makes the firetruck pages problematic, however, are the two unbuckled, unrestrained firefighters hanging off the back of the truck, a once-common practice that’s been long discontinued as unsafe—odd, given the book’s attention to safety while riding. All of the examples of safety restraints are nice enough, there’s just far too many. The book is at its best when showing less-obvious examples of buckling up, such as the life-jacketed dog.
The monotony of the text and the needlessly exhaustive nature of the examples make this one just OK. (Board book. 2-3)