Category Archives: Trucks/Power Equipment

Otis and the Tornado

By Loren Long

Published by Philomel Books

Copyright © 2011


Otis is a little tractor on the farm. In his spare time he likes to play follow the leader with all of his barnyard animal pals. All of the animals on the farm love Otis, all except one, the bull. The bull wasn’t friendly with anyone, and even though Otis tried to be nice to him the bull was as cantankerous as ever.  One day a tornado touches down on the farm and Otis tries to round up all his animal friends and get them to safety, but the bull is not Otis’ friend. Whatever will happen to him?


I liked the story of Otis, even if it is a tad predictable. It is a great book to show kids the power of kindness. Otis the tractor certainly personifies the lesson that a good person cares about everyone, even those who don’t seem to deserve it.


Even more than the story itself I love Long’s illustrations in this book. He contrasts the shiny red tractor and colorful animals with a stark, and eventually ominous, landscape. The green and gray in the sky when the tornado touches down is really quite eerie; it evokes that frightening feeling of an oncoming storm.


This is a great book for children ages 4 and up.


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Filed under Children's Picture Books, Friends, Nature/Animals, Trucks/Power Equipment, Weather

The Village Garage

The Village Garage

By G. Brian Karas

Published by Henry Holt & Company

Copyright © 2010

“The Village Garage” is a charming book that puts the seasons on display through the eyes of the workers at the village garage. In spring they can clean up from winter storms and wash the trucks. In summer they are busy fixing roads. In fall there are lots of leaves to clean up. And in winter there is snow to plow. There are so many things for them to do, and they enjoy their job.

“The Village Garage” is a great book for boys and girls ages 4-9; however I think that this book will have a strong appeal to boys who will enjoy learning about the seasons by connecting it with the different activities requiring trucks, power equipment, and more.

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Filed under Nature/Animals, People & Places, Seasonal, Trucks/Power Equipment