THE ROADMAN BOOGIE by Nikki Slade Robinson


Age Range: 4 - 6
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He’s got the music in him, and he can’t stop dancing.

While the big diggers move the earth and fill up the trucks at the side of the highway, a hard rain falls. The Roadman has a bit of trouble holding up his big stop sign. He’s chilly, bored, soggy, and fighting a cold. When a car pulls up, blaring out a rockabilly tune, Roadman’s toes begin to twitch, and he can’t help but dance along with the music. The same thing happens when a decorated station wagon drives by with a doo-wop song emanating from it. A truck blaring a country-music ballad gets his knees rocking back and forth. He also moves to a boogie-woogie beat, a rhumba, a saucy salsa, a bit of jazz, a brassy bugle band, and a dazzling disco track. He’s so busy dancing he doesn’t notice the rising water. “The river’s overflowed!” Quickly, he puts out his cones and closes the road. Traffic is likely to be stalled for hours. There’s only one sensible thing to do: invite everyone to “my Roadman’s Boogie Ball!” Robinson’s rhyming text gives the story a bit of a lift, but her illustrations don’t fulfill the promise of so many different styles of dance, and the idea of matching the music to the vehicles is only half realized, so spread after spread features nothing but the pale-skinned Roadman dancing against a gray, textured backdrop meant to evoke rain.

Unsatisfying. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2016
ISBN: 978-1-76036-012-2
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Starfish Bay
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2016


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