Kids’ books: Big rig fans will love ‘Buster the Little Garbage Truck’

Pick up your toys, please.

That’s something you have to do every day. You wouldn’t want somebody to trip, would you? Or somebody to step on something, and break it? No, it’s much better to pick your things up and put them away. And in the new book “Buster the Little Garbage Truck” by Marcia Berneger, illustrated by Kevin Zimmer, one little guy picks things up, just like Daddy does.

Someday, Little Buster was going to be a big garbage truck, and he was going to go to work with his Daddy. They’d be a team. It would be fun! Buster couldn’t wait, so he practiced zooming around the garage with his friend Kitty. Sometimes, playing like that was messy, but it was no problem. That’s the way garbage is sometimes.

All the other trucks in the garage were loud so, because Buster wanted to be just like them, he practiced his honk every day. At first, it sounded like a whispery beep, a tiny sound that wasn’t anywhere near Daddy’s HONK! But Daddy’s ear-splitting HONK scared Buster, and Buster wasn’t sure he liked that.

Daddy offered to take Buster to work one day but when the other trucks gave their “truck-yard welcome,” they almost ROARED, and that scared Buster, too.

This just wasn’t going to work at all. How was he ever going to grow up to work in the garage like a big truck, if he couldn’t handle big noises?

Maybe he just needed some time. Buster went back to the garage with Kitty, and he practiced his horn some more. Beep! Beep! It still sounded like a whisper, no matter what Buster did. Even his toys were louder — and scary!

Buster was so discouraged. Mama could see that, so she suggested that he take a little drive around the block with Kitty. That might make him feel better.

And it did — for awhile. Then Kitty, who’d run ahead to play with some garbage fell into one of the full cans. It was a can that Buster’s daddy was getting ready to pick up and dump in the back of the big garbage haul he was carrying.

And Daddy didn’t see Kitty inside. …

You are a road warrior. You can call yourself that because you know which roads guarantee the best sightings of big trucks. Anything to keep your child happy, right? So here’s a book that does it nicely.

With colorful illustrations by Zimmer and a sweet saves-the-day story by Berneger, “Buster the Little Garbage Truck” will make it easy to choose a book for storytime or bedtime. Few little boys (or girls!) will be able to resist this tale of bravery where it counts, and you’re willing to add sound effects for horns, well, all the better.

This is one of those books that big-truck lovers can’t afford to be without. Certainly, it’s one that won’t sit on the shelf much. You know you need “Buster the Little Garbage Truck” in your house, so pick it up.

Terri Schlichenmeyer writes for the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

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