Spelldown: Where's My T-R-U-C-K? by Karen Beaumont
SHHH! I HEAR MY PARENTS SAY,
"TOMMY'S NOT HIMSELF TODAY!
HE'S LOST HIS T-R-U-C-K!"
We've all been there. Something we have GOT to have is NOT where it's supposed to be, and we can't do anything until we find it!
Tommy's in that kind of funk. He woke up in the mood to play with his red truck, and now it's nowhere to be found. You might think that it's his fault. After all, he's a rumply, disheveled sight, and his room, with its half-open drawers trailing pajama bottoms and his closet, an avalanche waiting to happen, is in total disarray. But he knows just WHERE that truck is supposed to be, and IT'S NOT THERE!
He can't be consoled and he can't be cajoled into doing something else. His brother tries to distract him with a jaunt outside to climb trees, and his sister offers to play house with him, but Tommy keeps searching.
"I SEARCHED MY BROTHER'S PILE OF JUNK.
I LOOKED IN GRANDMA'S SMELLY TRUNK.
AND UNDERNEATH THE BED AND CHAIR.
AND BEHIND THE CURTAIN...
OOOPS! NOT THERE!"
Grandma's bath is interrupted by Tommy's search behing the shower curtain, and her screech doesn't improve his mood in the least. Outside he goes to search the sandbox and flower garden plots. Tommy even gets stranded in the treehouse when his dog mysteriously zooms by and knocks the ladder down.
But no luck! No TRUCK!
Tommy may not have a clue, but by this time most of the young readers will have figured out the source of the problem--his dog Bowser, who is seen on each two-page spread making off with a different object firmly clamped in his teeth. And when the mutt makes off with the cat's favorite toy, the fur flies as the cat gives chase and leads Tommy right to Bowser's secret stash in a well-excavated hole in the garden, where a quick archaeological dig uncovers (you don't say!)--Tommy's T-R-U-C-K!
Author Karen Beaumont, the creator of such hilarious rhyming tales as I Ain't Gonna Paint No More! (Ala Notable Children's Books. Younger Readers (Awards),) Doggone Dogs, and No Sleep for the Sheep!, is reunited with zany illustrator David Catrow for another funny-bone tickler, Where's My T·R·U·C·K? (Dial Books, 2011), a sure-fire pleaser for the preschool/Kindergarten set. There's even a short and sweet spelling lesson thrown in, with everyone (including Tommy) learning how to spell TRUCK by the conclusion.
Kirkus Reviews has some salient advise here: "Don't read this at bedtime; the boisterous energy here is aptly summed up in the final rhyme: "HOORAY! I FOUND MY T-R-U-C-K! / Come on, Bowser! Let's go play!"