Monsters in Trucks / Tiny T.Rex and the Grand Ta-Da!

Monsters in Trucks
Laura Baker and Nina Dzyvulska
Happy Yak

Put together two subjects popular with young children – monsters and trucks – and you’re surely on to a winner.

That’s what we have in this picture book that takes us to a world populated by truck-driving monsters. They come in all shapes and sizes, some happy, others downright grumpy; there are more than forty kinds in all, many in one way or another engaged in the construction of a monster city. Some however, appear to have other things in mind such as partying and there’s one among their number that’s a thief on the loose; he needs to be apprehended and fast.

Can little humans pick a favourite: it might be grump monster (so busy being grumpy that he drives right into a big hole), roar monster, prickly monster, tickle monster, or perhaps jiggly monster who is in the queue for the loo.

I loved the snuggle and cuddle monsters.

Laura Baker’s rhyming romp of a text and Nina Dzyvulska’s vividly coloured scenes work well together, the fun details of the latter offer plenty to talk about. Further fun comes in the form of a ladybird that lurks in every scene.

A sharing of this book in an early years setting may well result in an outbreak of monster creativity.

Tiny T.Rex and the Grand Ta-Da!
Jonathan Stutzman and Jay Fleck
Chronicle Books

Tiny R.Rex and Pointy, the delightful dinos. are back and having seen a poster for the school talent show, have decided to enter. Tiny is fairly confident but Pointy is more than a tad apprehensive. Then inspiration comes in the form of their hero the Amazing Presto whose book they turn to. ‘Magic is meant to be shared’ they read: that means their joint skills could carry them through.

First though they need to train, so they don top hats, wield wands, appoint an assistant – Bob the teddybear – and choose their special magic word.

Magic though, especially a disappearing trick, doesn’t just happen; mistakes are part of the learning process

and their confidence starts to wane. Time to go back to the drawing board. Then after some very careful planning and a creative boost, the two are ready to step forward and face the audience – well almost. Suddenly Pointy is overwhelmed by nerves: can he summon his inner courage and make an appearance after all?

Patience, perseverance and supporting one another are key in this latest outing for Tiny and Pointy, with the former taking centre stage in terms of the narration. There’s food for thought at the show’s finale.

As always this dino. duo are charmers and are likely to win new human friends after a sharing of the vibrantly illustrated story.

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