Kirkus Reviews QR Code


by Carol Roth & illustrated by Pamela Paparone

Age Range: 3 - 7

Pub Date: July 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-7358-1646-8
Publisher: NorthSouth

Roth and Paparone (Ten Dirty Pigs/Ten Clean Pigs, 1999, etc.) reveal a universal truth known to children, but oft-times forgotten by adults: the bus ride to school can be the best part of the day. As the peppy yellow bus zooms around town, it collects an unusual assortment of passengers. One by one, seven silly animals climb onboard. Roth’s witty verses offer uproarious thumbnail sketches of the eclectic crowd, as “a pig in a wig,” “a hairy bear,” “a quick, quick chick,” and others clamber onto the vehicle past the friendly reptilian driver. A pair of rhyming verses introduces each creature followed by a laundry-list review of all the previous passengers, culminating in the exuberant chant, “Riding the bus to school, to school, riding the bus to school.” Once its merry charges are deposited at their destination, the bus patiently awaits the time to return them all back home. Paparone’s vividly colored illustrations are a hilarious counterpart to the sprightly rhymes. Brimming with visual puns, her paintings are both realistic and humorous: from the antics of the passengers to mundane, yet slightly satirical, activities of the background characters peppering the landscape, she offers up a comical slice of life that is readily recognizable to young readers. An ebullient blend of singsong chants and giddy rhymes, this rollicking read-aloud tale is perfect to share with the youngest preschooler. (Picture book. 3-7)