Thursday, January 7, 2010


Horn Book (September/October, 2009)
"Millions of years ago prehistoric trucks roamed the earth." These dinotrux (which included Craneosaurus, Dozeratops, Dumploducus, Garbageadon, and Tyrannosaurus Trux, among others) are the forebears -- the much nastier forebears -- of modern trucks. They did not get along with each other, much less with people -- at least not until a blinding light and big storm forced the smarter ones to migrate and evolve into their more helpful modern counterparts. In fact, the penultimate spread depicts one truck extracting the "fossilized" remains of Tyrannosaurus Trux. With a final page turn T. Trux is housed in a museum; he towers over the janitor sweeping the floor, and his headlights blink on ominously. With a clever stroke of genius, Gall has combined two boyhood fixations -- trucks and dinosaurs -- in one double-the-fun book. These subjects, along with strong lines, bold colors, and plentiful asides that invite audience participation, recall the work of Jim and Kate McMullan (particularly I Stink!, rev. 5/02, and I'm Bad!, rev. 5/08), and fans of those books should embrace this one with equal zest.

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