Time for School, Little Blue Truck

Clarion. (Little Blue Truck). Jun. 2021. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780358412243.
PreS-Gr 1–Little Blue Truck sees the yellow school bus and wishes that he could drive the farm animals to school. The bus reminds him that although he is a tough little truck and very friendly, he is not built for the job; the bus is long and shiny and has lots of seats and windows. Dejectedly Blue trundles off in the other direction, when he sees Piggy at the side of the road—Piggy has overslept and missed the bus. The determined Little Blue Truck will get Piggy to school on time, and he knows a shortcut through the woods. Young readers will cheer for the eager little truck as he barrels through the forest, going where the big school bus can’t venture; through streams and over bumpy terrain and along narrow paths. Preschoolers will have a blast anticipating the sounds of the domesticated animals, “Little goat said, “Maaa!” Little horse said, “Neigh!”” and spotting the shy denizens of the forest. Soft gouache paintings of farmland and woods lend an old-fashioned 1940s feel to the story. (The title page notes that Joseph has illustrated the book in the style of the late Jill McElmurry.) Schertle’s rhyming text adds a delightful pacing and rhythm that matches the images; a frog leaping out of the way as Blue splashes through the water.
VERDICT A charming tale of an endearing little truck on a mission. Perfect for story times.

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