An entertaining vehicle that has a few dings.



A guessing-game introduction to wheels and the vehicles that use them.

Sandwiched between opening and closing spreads, two-spread pairs provide some clues as to a vehicle and then the answer, the latter separated from the former by a wheel-shaped die-cut page. Each verso provides a one- or two-sentence clue written in rhymed verse, ending with the same question: “CAN YOU GUESS WHAT I AM?” For a clue, a full image of the wheel in question appears on the same page below the text, the recto is a 90-degree slice of that tire, and a little bit of the scene on the following page is visible below the tire edge. The page turn reveals the answer and features a scene with diverse people using or boarding the conveyance. For the spreads about a train, a bit of the train platform, tracks, and waiting passengers are visible from behind the train wheel. When the page is turned, the almost-double-page spread reveals the train and passengers waiting in the station. This format works for some of the vehicles, such as the bicycle, police car, and stroller, but most of the larger modes of transport, such as the school bus and the garbage truck, are truncated in odd ways due to the wheel-shaped page. Ward’s art is cheery, with muted swaths of color and easily identifiable imagery.

An entertaining vehicle that has a few dings. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: July 1, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-06-286863-3

Page Count: 30

Publisher: HarperFestival

Review Posted Online: Aug. 26, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2019

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Clean design and invitations to action will help young builders become readers—expect to find this book in the sand box or...


From the My Little World series

This busy board book introduces five colors, five construction vehicles, and five physical movements.

Each spread begins with the same two couplets: “Noisy Yellow Digger meets someone new. / ‘What is your name and what do you do?’ ” An orange crane, green steamroller, blue dump truck, and red bulldozer each reply, “I’ll show you what I do....” Behind a full-page flap, each truck uses simple, first-person language to explain its basic function in relation to the yellow digger. On the opposite side of the now-open flap cheerful construction-worker bears invite child readers to mimic each vehicle’s action. Opening the flap also produces a truck sound that plays briefly. (The book’s speaker is in the rear cover, so readers may need to take care not to muffle it.) A radio appears with all the vehicles on the final spread, and the flap opens to reveal the bears dancing. The sounds seem almost incidental; the book’s strengths are clear, consistent illustrations and repetitive language. For example, the scene changes with each page, but the digger is always the same, and details (a bee, butterfly, or cloud) shown on the closed page can be found in the same place when the flap is opened. Small print on the back cover cautions that the sounds are light-activated, which makes this a poor choice for bedtime.

Clean design and invitations to action will help young builders become readers—expect to find this book in the sand box or on the road rug. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: March 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5892-5242-4

Page Count: 10

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2017

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This arbitrary collection of things that go really goes nowhere.



Twenty-four vehicles are each depicted on a single page with one sentence that describes what that vehicle does.

Unfortunately, very few of the vehicles in this board book actually go “vroom.” Instead, a “helicopter zooms through the sky,” and a “ferryboat carries people across a river.” While the level of detail presented is about right for very young children, the creators missed an opportunity to also describe the characteristic sound of each vehicle. Such descriptions would have made this book of motorized conveyances a satisfyingly noisy and interactive reading experience. Mack's greeting-card–cute illustrations are generic to the point of blandness. All the vehicles are driven by racially diverse figures with toylike, identical smiles. The only illustration that shows movement or speed is a view from above of race cars on a track. All the other images are shown from the side, reduced to their essential shapes. Sometimes the scenes shown on facing pages share a skyline, but the roads these vehicles travel on are not connected. On the page with a police car that “whizzes by on a high speed chase,” the car being chased is not even on the same road. The final two-page spread reviews all the vehicles shown earlier.

This arbitrary collection of things that go really goes nowhere. (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Jan. 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4114-7589-2

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Sterling

Review Posted Online: Jan. 20, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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