This gleeful mashup of dinosaurs and things-that-go will surely rev up some noisy participation when it is read aloud.
Dale returns with rhythmic text and vibrant watercolor-and-ink illustrations in her second dino romp (Dinosaur Dig, 2011). A first glimpse of the cover featuring a fiery-hued dinosaur behind the wheel of a blue convertible hurtling at great speed through the desert establishes that this is not your typical dino book. The beginning of the book sets a pattern in which a particular-colored dinosaur steers a certain vehicle in a specific terrain on their way to a big event. An Ankylosaurus drives a minivan, a Stegosaurus pilots an old pickup truck, and so on. (Interestingly, Welsh artist Dale mounts some steering wheels on the right and some on the left of the various cars.) Children will have fun spotting the various presents tucked away on these pages, building a little suspense and foreshadowing the party to come. The language rumbles along with sound effects: “Green dinosaur rattling. Rattling down the hill. Down the hill with a heavy load. Chug! Chug! Chug!” Soon, almost all have arrived to unload and decorate. They are “hurrying to get ready….Quick! Quick! Quick!” Once all that is done, the group hides in the trees to surprise the littlest dinosaur for his birthday. Readers will be tickled to learn that dinosaurs appear to like pizza, cookies and cake, just as they do.
From start to finish, this cleverly constructed and well-designed title is a winner. (Picture book. 3-6)