As in her Trucks Roll! (2007) and Planes Fly! (2013), Lyon and her co-author celebrate a ubiquitous, well-loved form of transport in verse and launch it along on young readers’ imaginations. Numerous boats of all kinds and sizes, from different cultures and parts of the world and used for a variety of purposes, including play and habitation, are introduced here. Young readers will be awash in vessels plying waterways from rivers to lakes, ponds to bathtubs, and pools to oceans. Front and back endpapers feature a floating parade, and the colorful digital illustrations of the various boats and their environs showcase many shades of watery blue and exude spirited energy. The staunchest of landlubbers will yearn to set sail; one can almost hear the gently lapping waves. Overall, the verses are jaunty, though the rhymes and rhythms are inconsistent, sometimes even a bit clunky. Children will appreciate learning nifty new seafaring terms such as “poop deck,” “head,” “bilibilis,” “wherries,” “coracles,” and “dinghies,” all italicized in the text, as they picture themselves at the helm of any of the boats floating on these pages. In some illustrations, however, it’s not always clear to which boats certain terms refer, so parental sailing expertise may be required.
Young navigation enthusiasts, from bathtub ships’ captains to ocean-cruiser wannabes, will enjoy this voyage. (Picture book. 4-7)