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TRUCKS by Ken Robbins


Giants of the Highway

by Ken Robbins

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1999
ISBN: 0-689-82664-8
Publisher: Atheneum

Robbins (Autumn Leaves, 1998, etc.) chooses a bright palette for his hand-colored photographs, painting the cabs of a series of big rigs in eye-catching shades with trailers and backgrounds in paler tints, but many of the shots are taken from such a distance that the look is artificial, without detail or a sense of scale. The author compounds the sense of distance by showing several truckers but not introducing them; although he describes, in brief, the parts of a tractor-trailer and the kinds of loads it can haul, he skips what’s under the hood or on the dashboard. Compared to books such as Hope Irwin Marston’s Big Rigs (1993), David Jefferis’s Giants of the Road (1991), or even Robbins’s own Trucks Of Every Sort (1981), this comes off more as an exercise in artistic technique, with terse accompanying captions, than a portrait gallery leveled at young truck enthusiasts. (Picture book. 6-9)