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Supertruck
2015
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Author Notes
Stephen Savage is the illustrator of the New York Times- bestselling picture book Polar Bear Night , also named a New York Times Best Illustrated children's book. He is also the creator of Little Tug, which School Library Journal called "petite but powerful." He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and daughter.
Fiction/Biography Profile
Genre
Fiction
Juvenile
Topics
City life
Automobiles
Snow
Storms
Superheroes
Trucks
Shapes and sizes (juvenile topic)
Colors
Time Period
2000s -- 21st century
Large Cover Image
Trade Reviews

  Publishers Weekly Review

In a city "full of brave trucks," writes Savage (Little Tug), the green bucket truck, red fire truck, and blue tow truck spend their days rescuing this and fixing that, all with can-do smiles. But the nebbishy, bespectacled garbage truck? He's not only colorless, "He just collects the trash." Of course, Clark Kent flew under the radar, too-and, sure enough, when a blizzard hits, that very same garbage truck emerges from his garage as the snow-plowing Supertruck. He "digs out the whole city" (as well as his snazzier counterparts), only to disappear without waiting for thanks: "The next morning, the trucks wonder about the mighty truck who saved them. Where could he be?" Savage's take on the superhero myth is terrific: there's no bullying or teasing of the garbage truck, which makes his Supertruck transformation a triumph pure and simple. And the images are as fun as they are gorgeous: Savage's vehicles exude a Golden Book sweetness, while his city scenes have both a crisp stylishness and an emotional punch. Ages 2-6. Agent: Brenda Bowen, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. (Jan.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

  School Library Journal Review

PreS-K-Flashy trucks in the city go about their daily lives, impressing all those around them, until a snowstorm hits. Surprisingly, it is the unassuming garbage truck that saves the day, transforming into SUPERTRUCK, with the addition of snowplow blades. The nod to Superman (the garbage truck's Clark Kent glasses) will not be lost on adult readers. The city is left wondering and marveling at what could have rescued them, while readers are delightfully privy to the garbage truck's secret transformation. This read-along perfectly meshes Savage's distinct, bold illustrations and accessible text with award-winning David Mansfield's masterly orchestral score. Actor George Newbern provides a compelling, friendly narration. The theme that the least among the trucks becomes the most powerful is sure to appeal even to the smallest listener. The bio information narrated by Savage at the end of track three will interest listeners of all ages. VERDICT A must-have for collections that serve the littlest clientele.-Terri Perper, Olney Elementary School, MD © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Booklist Review

*Starred Review* Let's face it. Some trucks get all the glory, rushing about to repair a sparking power line, put out a fire, or tow a stranded school bus. Meanwhile, the lowly garbage truck goes about his work, collecting trash and hauling it away. But when a blizzard immobilizes the city and even the important bucket truck, fire engine, and tow truck can't get through the snow, the garbage truck adds a plow and becomes SUPERTRUCK, digging out the streets. The next day, he is back to his old job, collecting the garbage while the other vehicles wonder about the mighty truck who saved them. The short, pithy text is paired with beautifully composed illustrations in which clean lines, blocks of color, and effectively used textures create varied, evocative city scenes. Best known for illustrating picture books such as Lauren Thompson's Polar Bear Night (2004) and his own Where's Walrus? (2011), Savage makes the trucks into vivid characters by adding simple facial features. He also gives the intrepid garbage truck big black glasses, which go missing when he goes into super mode, suggesting Clark Kent's classic transformation into Superman. Just right for winter storytimes, this winning picture book will find an appreciative audience beyond just young truck-lovers.--Phelan, Carolyn Copyright 2015 Booklist

  Horn Book Review

Secret identities, superheroes, and trucks. What more is there to say? While the city's "brave trucks" -- bucket, fire, and tow -- perform flashy tasks such as fixing power lines, fighting a blaze, and saving a broken-down bus, respectively, our unassuming, bespectacled hero quietly goes about his job: "The garbage truck? He just collects the trash." When a blizzard hits, blanketing the city and trapping the other trucks in tire-deep snow, the garbage truck sneaks into his version of a telephone booth (a garage) and emerges -- sans eyeglasses, headlights beaming, and with a shiny new plow attachment -- as: "SUPERTRUCK!" He clears the roads, then trundles away, leaving everyone to wonder about the "mighty truck" who saved them -- himself back to just doin' his job. Each page turn in this preschooler-perfect superhero book effortlessly does its job, from setting the friendly-looking urban scene to subtly introducing character traits (there are no people in the book, just trucks...and a squirrel) to marking the passage of time as snow continues to fall. Simple, recognizable shapes and bold crayon-box colors (plus snowy white) create images that are visually approachable, with smiley and frowny faces that telegraph emotions. The text is spare, but there's still plenty of drama! mystery! danger! And best of all: a good guy whose just reward is helping others. He may not be faster than a speeding bullet, but this trash-hauler is one super truck. elissa gershowitz (c) Copyright 2015. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Kirkus Review

When a blizzard stops the mighty trucks of the city from working, it's Supertruck to the rescue! In this metropolis, a cadre of brave trucks fixes electrical lines, extinguishes fires, and tows buses in need. But the garbage truck? He "just collects the trash." That is, until a snowstorm hits the town and he becomes Supertruck. With his mighty snow plow, he clears the roads all through the night. And in the bright, clear morning, the other trucks are left to wonder about the identity of the "mighty truck who saved them." Exciting, one-sentence-per-spread text is reminiscent of a Superman cartoon narration. (This is no coincidence; in his secret identity, Supertruck wears Clark Kent-style glasses.) In combination with crisp graphics and bold colors, the text makes the story accessible to young readers, while the sophisticated digital illustrations will appeal to all. Using a cool palette, Savage exploits shapes and colors to create interesting imagery and atmospheric environments for the truck that show that collecting trash is just as heroic as powerfully plowing through snow. A serious treat for truck lovers. (Picture book. 2-6) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Summary
<p>When the city is hit by a colossal snowstorm, only one superhero can save the day. But who is this mysterious hero, and why does he disappear once his job is done?</p> <p>Find out in this snowy tale about a little truck with a very big job, the second of Stephen Savage's vehicle-based picture books.</p>
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