What works from crack of dawn to dusk and not using a break until it delivers all it is freight? A very busy steam engine gets the job done on this cheerful story. Illustrations.
Kids love trains, and Kevin Lewis and illustrator Daniel Kirk’s Chugga-Chugga Choo-Choo will do nothing but encourage the obsession. “Sun’s up! / Morning’s here. / Up and at ’em, / engineer,” cheerfully begins this rhyming picture book. As the simple large-lettered text chugs along, Daniel Kirk brings a child’s playroom and train set to life with bold, bright illustrations harking back to his work in Bigger. For the duration of the book, the toys bustle about to ensure the steam engine is loaded up with freight and finds its way (through the country, ’round the mountains, into tunnels, and across the river) to its destination–the city. There the “sleepy-sleepy choo-choo” rests, right next to a tired little boy, until the following day’s work begins: “To the roundhouse / you’re bound. / Good night, engine, / secure and sound.” (Baby to preschool)