Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Smash! Crash!

Smash! Crash! is the first in the new Jon Scieszka's Trucktown series, aimed at pre-schoolers. The first book features Jack Truck and Dump Truck Dan, but the cast of characters will eventually include more than ten personified truck characters including Rescue Rita, Payloader Pete, and Hook and Ladder Lucy.

In Smash! Crash!, best friends Jack and Dan are looking for opportunities to do just that.

"'Hey, Max!' says Jack. 'Help us smashing!' 'Yeah, Max,' says Dan. 'Help us crashing!'
But Max is awfully busy. 'Sorry, guys. No can do. Got to stack these barrels by two.'
'Aw, don't be such a four-wheeler dud,' says Jack. 'Come on and ...'
The storyline is sure to appeal to Scieszka's favorite audience, boys.

The illustrations are a riot of action and color from the winning team of David Shannon, Loren Long, and David Gordon. The headlight eyes and grill mouths are as full of expression as the town is full of action. Even the words are busy. The text zooms and jumps through the pages with varying fonts, sizes, and cartooning effects. The final page is a vertical foldout of Wrecking Crane Rosie. At last the boys will Smash! Crash! where their help is actually wanted!

Scieszka, the newly appointed National Ambassador for Children's Literature has more than fifty books planned for the Trucktown series. Details are in the following Simon & Schuster link along with PDF activity sheets for librarians and teachers.

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