Thursday 10 May 2012

Cars, lorries and trucks

Mr Exuberance, aged 3 and 1/4, loves books about machines. His choices are by no means exclusively around vehicles and other forms of machinery but this does seem to be an enduring theme.
This is about those books that get read again and again. Both, he and I, can manage parts from memory.

Amazing machines is a series of books by Tony Mitton and Ant Parker. They are written in rhyme and have cheerful pictures with three characters a rabbit, a mouse and a bird. They are factual and end with a page about the workings of the particular machine. The best of the best seems to be Terrific Trains but I rarely get away with reading one.

The Mr Little series by Richard Fowler appears to be out of print but is available cheaply second hand. These books are about noisy machines and are full of onomatopoeias. Each page has a flap under which is an animal. Most of the flaps in our copies have had to have sellotape but since they have been read and reread, over almost two decades, I'm not complaining.

The glorious flight across the Channel with Louis Bleriot, by Alice and Martin Provensen, is just what it says: the story of the first flight across the Channel. This is told as a story including the names and ages of the children. We've read and reread this as well as visiting the landing site and seeing a similar plane.

Katy and the big snow and Mike Mulligan and his steam shovel are both by Virginia Lee Burton. These are Five in a Row books. Katy is a snow plough and Mike Mulligan has a steam shovel called Mary Anne. Katy and the big snow has borders on some of the pages with fascinating detail-there are 55 horses drawn in groups of five to illustrate 55 horse power. I didn't know about steam shovels before we read Mike Mulligan but now I've watched videos of several in action and Mr Exuberance was excited to discover a steam shovel in another of Virginia Lee Burton's books, The little house. 

This is our version of a steam shovel.

The Percy the Park Keeper books aren't really about machines but Percy's bumpy ride is about a rather fanciful lawn mover and the rather dramatic consequences of using it.

Finally, a really factual series from DK, Machines at work. These have bright photographs and a few paragraphs on each page.

Any recommendations? I imagine that this may be a popular theme with other little boys.

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