Mother Goose gets a mechanical makeover in this gear-inspired nursery-rhyme collection.
Twenty-three familiar rhymes are rewritten with a wide range of vehicles in mind. As nursery rhymes are such a flexible form, they easily lend themselves to Colby’s motorized reimaginings. Whether it’s “Little Miss Mixer,” “This Little Steam Train,” or “Bumpty Dumpty” (about a dump truck, naturally), caregivers should have no difficulty singing, chanting, or rhythmically reading the verses on display. Each scans perfectly, never requiring readers to engage in any verbal gymnastics. There are even helpful hints for caregivers below each poem’s title, indicating its original name (“Little Jack Junker” references “Little Jack Horner,” for instance). While most of the poems in this collection pass muster, the same cannot be said for Kaminsky’s digital art. His cartoony anthropomorphic vehicles are rendered with little sophistication in their depictions and as much attention to scale. The media notes tell readers outlines were drawn with a digital piece of soft vine charcoal, but the inconsistency in their thickness between the vehicles and animals depicted gives the compositions a cut-and-paste quality. The result is a book with aural but not visual charm.
A partial misfire. (Picture book. 2-5)