Ode to a wrecking ball! And other heavy construction equipment.
"Grab your gear. Grab your gear," begins the book, which offers 11 four-line verses in bold lettering, each in a two-page spread highlighting a different aspect of the demolition process. Workers get into their protective gear as the wrecking ball is moved into place: "Buckle, tie, and strap. / Safety jackets, boots and hats. / Zip! Stamp! SNAP!" The jaws of the excavator "Rip! Roar! CRASH!" And its basket works to "Ram the walls. Ram the walls." The mobile crusher grinds up broken concrete, and the industrial wood chipper shreds the wood: "Split and chop and chip." One verse is dedicated to loading the truck with debris, another to building playground equipment on the excavation site. The final lines—"Join the fun. Join the fun... / Hip...hip... HOORAY!"—depict happy people using the park that has been designed and built on the demolition site. A final illustrated page offers some concise "Machine Facts" on both the vehicles and some of their components. The onomatopoeia in Sutton's simple rhyming text is appealingly extreme, and it's like a natural for listener repetition, though the verses could be more distinct from one another. Lovelock's bright pictures—in ink, acrylic and colored pencil—are a solid match.
Smashing good fun for preschoolers of both genders. (Picture book. 3-5)