Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Truck

Truck
Donald Crews ~ Greenwillow Books, 1980


Celebrating African American History Month, I'm gonna focus for a few days on vintage children's books specifically imagined by black writers and illustrators. Taking the excellent advice of reader Dawn D. Lion, I'm turning my attention for the moment on Donald Crews. Though Jerry Pinkney made history last month as the first individual African-American to win the Caldecott Medal for The Lion & the Mouse... Crews has gotten close as a two-time Caldecott Honor winner, one of which was received in celebration of this ditty. Clearly created with a designer's eye, it's a wordless fable of signs, cities, vehicles and highways. The bold use of colors, letters and shapes makes it great for babies and toddlers, while the logos and words throughout offer huge fun for a first reader.Though his first Honor book, Freight Train, is more remembered... Truck packs a wallop if you have one of those kids obsessed with all things wheeled. I'd also forgotten Crews is married to another awesome children's book writer and illustrator, Ann Jonas. Thanks for the remind today, Dawn! Ever since my son became Harry Potter obsessed, he's set his younger books aside. Might be time to see if I can dig up my fave, Rain, again!

9 comments:

Lise said...

I love Donald Crews. One of my favorite things is how he hides references to his other books within his books. I think "School Bus" is represented in "Truck," if I'm remembering right.

pussreboots said...

Truck is a huge hit with my two kids. We love the local landscapes included in the illustrations.

conuly said...

I'm not such a fan of Crews' mostly wordless books, but I love Shortcut by him.

As your kid is getting older, you think you'll ever branch out into vintage chapter books and so on?

Jennifer said...

Hmm, I admit I've never thought of Crews as "vintage" but I guess he is! I replace his books regularly at the library, so far this year we got a new Harbor, School Bus, and I think Flight....

Scribbler said...

Sad that anything over 20 years old is vintage, I know... and this book is 30!

For the most part we read picture books and chapter books during the day, and then longer books at night. His favorites are all the Dahl books (except the Glass Elevator... we got halfway through that before being bored to tears), the My Father's Dragon series, Trumpet of the Swan, Charlotte's Web, that sort of stuff. But Harry Potter is trumping everything right now. I got him the audio book of the first one which he listened to unabridged six times, before I caved and started getting him the others. Against my better judgement, he is currently in the middle of listening to book 7 on audio, and his father is reading him book 1 again at night before he goes to bed. I'm sure this time next year he'll be reading fully on his own and back on Frog and Toad and traditional chapter books as a start... so yeah, it's safe to say we are not vintage exclusive in this house (admittedly Captain Underpants is a current fave)... but I still enjoy focusing on the illustration and feel like there is so much I haven't covered in picture books. But sprinkled here and there you'll start to see the longer books coming out.

Meghan said...

we just "read" carousel yesterday. beautiful illustrations!

captain underpants drives me crazy....sweet pea is obsessed too. i can't even imagine what those two would be like together...

Scribbler said...

Meg- Ha! My name's Lumpy Pizza Chunks. What's yours?

Mikelle Smith said...

my oldest son loves this book as well as freight train.... thanks for reminding me of them it has been quite sometime since we read them! thanks for all you do on this blog. you have brought so many great books and authors to my attention that i may have never discovered to read to my boys!

Rob said...

Just wanted to say that I've been looking around your blog, and it's full of wonderful stuff, thanks for putting up!

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