I LIKE MY CAR

From the I Like To Read series

Though it’s not groundbreaking, this book is bound to please beginning readers with automotive fixations and patience for no...

Fishes of the sea, birds of the air, and critters of the land unite around a single belief: Their cars rock!

Even struggling readers will be challenged to find anything at all difficult in this latest entry in the I Like to Read series. It certainly won’t be the writing, as all pages contain only the words “I like my…car,” the sole textual variation being the color of each vehicle and a single “too.” Nor will they tussle with the plot, such as it is. As readers watch, a series of jaunty animals, each tucked snug behind the wheel of their conveyances (the sole exception being the chauffeured poodle in a limo), declares their fondness for their autos. Saving the book from utter innocuousness is its 1950s-vibed art. The endpapers sport such snazzy accoutrements as fuzzy dice; the style of each car is apt and distinctive; subtle in-jokes (a turtle applies a coat of wax; a pine-shaped air freshener dangles from the shark’s rearview mirror) abound. With each detail, Robertson’s mix of digital and physical art (including an etching press, water-based printing inks, and an onion bag) pays off. As they should, these drivers revel in their cars’ flashy, colorful looks, and they are set against some seriously mod backdrops.

Though it’s not groundbreaking, this book is bound to please beginning readers with automotive fixations and patience for no more than six words to a page. (Picture book/early reader. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 23, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-8234-3951-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: July 29, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2018

GOOD NIGHT, LITTLE BLUE TRUCK

A sweet reminder that it’s easy to weather a storm with the company and kindness of friends.

Is it a stormy-night scare or a bedtime book? Both!

Little Blue Truck and his good friend Toad are heading home when a storm lets loose. Before long, their familiar, now very nervous barnyard friends (Goat, Hen, Goose, Cow, Duck, and Pig) squeeze into the garage. Blue explains that “clouds bump and tumble in the sky, / but here inside we’re warm and dry, / and all the thirsty plants below / will get a drink to help them grow!” The friends begin to relax. “Duck said, loud as he could quack it, / ‘THUNDER’S JUST A NOISY RACKET!’ ” In the quiet after the storm, the barnyard friends are sleepy, but the garage is not their home. “ ‘Beep!’ said Blue. ‘Just hop inside. / All aboard for the bedtime ride!’ ” Young readers will settle down for their own bedtimes as Blue and Toad drop each friend at home and bid them a good night before returning to the garage and their own beds. “Blue gave one small sleepy ‘Beep.’ / Then Little Blue Truck fell fast asleep.” Joseph’s rich nighttime-blue illustrations (done “in the style of [series co-creator] Jill McElmurry”) highlight the power of the storm and capture the still serenity that follows. Little Blue Truck has been chugging along since 2008, but there seems to be plenty of gas left in the tank.

A sweet reminder that it’s easy to weather a storm with the company and kindness of friends. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 22, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-85213-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: June 22, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2019

THE CRAYONS GO BACK TO SCHOOL

Nothing new here but a nonetheless congenial matriculant in publishing’s autumnal rite of back-to-school offerings.

The Crayons head back to class in this latest series entry.

Daywalt’s expository text lays out the basics as various Crayons wave goodbye to the beach, choose a first-day outfit, greet old friends, and make new ones. As in previous outings, the perennially droll illustrations and hand-lettered Crayon-speak drive the humor. The ever wrapperless Peach, opining, “What am I going to wear?” surveys three options: top hat and tails, a chef’s toque and apron, and a Santa suit. New friends Chunky Toddler Crayon (who’s missing a bite-sized bit of their blue point) and Husky Toddler Crayon speculate excitedly on their common last name: “I wonder if we’re related!” White Crayon, all but disappearing against the page’s copious white space, sits cross-legged reading a copy of H.G. Wells’ The Invisible Man. And Yellow and Orange, notable for their previous existential argument about the color of the sun, find agreement in science class: Jupiter, clearly, is yellow AND orange. Everybody’s excited about art class—“Even if they make a mess. Actually…ESPECIALLY if they make a mess!” Here, a spread of crayoned doodles of butterflies, hearts, and stars is followed by one with fulsome scribbles. Fans of previous outings will spot cameos from Glow in the Dark and yellow-caped Esteban (the Crayon formerly known as Pea Green). (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Nothing new here but a nonetheless congenial matriculant in publishing’s autumnal rite of back-to-school offerings. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: May 16, 2023

ISBN: 9780593621110

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: Feb. 24, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2023

more