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BUSY BOATS by Susan Steggall


by Susan Steggall & illustrated by Susan Steggall

Age Range: 2 - 7

Pub Date: July 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-1-84780-074-9
Publisher: Frances Lincoln

The harbor contains a surprising variety of fascinating boats of all sizes.

Everywhere you look there are fishing boats, cargo boats motor boats, ferries, tourist boats and more. Along the sea edge are huge cranes and storage facilities. In quieter, more picturesque spots, there are shops, cafes and quaint houses. There is no plot device to match the train ride in Stegall's earlier Rattle and Rap (2009), but the simple rhyming text is filled with action verbs that fill the book with sights and sounds and movement. Seagulls screech, engines shudder, cargo boats groan, rescue boats race by and row boats bob. Whether seen on land or aboard a boat, people are busy working or traveling or watching the action. Steggall is a master of torn-paper technique and renders scenes of remarkable depth and perspective in brightly colored detail, capturing a defining the essence of the life of the harbor. This kind of scene may seem foreign to landlocked young readers, and even American harbor rats may notice that this British port is not exactly like home. But they will be enthralled with the bustle and charm and will examine the pages over and over again, discovering more with each perusal.

Beguiling and visually compelling. Sail away! (Picture book. 2-7)