Dinos Driving by Lynn Leitch,  illustrated by Scot Ritchie

Dinos Driving by Lynn Leitch,  illustrated by Scot Ritchie. Pajama Press, 2022. 9781772782691

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 3.5

Format: Hardcover picture book

What did you like about the book?  Cute and cuddly dinosaurs drive a variety of vehicles, with each illustration loosely tied to an attribute of the extinct animal. Jurassic World this is not; the dinos are not remotely scary. Two giant blue polka-dotted Tyrannosaurus Rex dwarf their “monster trucks” (a little tongue-in-cheek humor) with one wearing flinging off his safety helmet while the other sports a tiny crown and racing goggles. The velociraptor family speeds by in a tricked out Mini Cooper, covered with stickers including “Raptors Rule!” The very attractive pen-and-ink drawings filled with digital color look like watercolor and the bold, irregular font changes color to match both the dinosaurs and the vehicles. I definitely liked the clean, spare, and stylish look of the book, with its boldly colored illustrations on mostly white pages. A short afterward shows pictures of the creatures and clarifies the attribute that led to their vehicle assignment. Also included: a list of interactive questions for adult readers to use with their children.  

Anything you didn’t like about it? It wasn’t obvious to me why particular dinos were put into the various vehicles – I had to read the afterward to figure that out. And as the whole concept is that it’s giggle-inducing to imagine dinosaurs in cars, this seemed a bridge too far. For example, Carnotaurus drives a limousine…because he has very short arms?

To whom would you recommend this book?  Toddler and preschool readers who like dinosaurs and things that go and aren’t too concerned yet with facts, pronunciations, and verisimilitude.

Who should buy this book? Preschools, public libraries

Where would you shelve it? Picture books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer: Susan Harari, Keefe Library, Boston Latin School, Boston, MA

Date of review: August 8, 2022

This entry was posted in *Book Review, *Picture Book, Cars, Dinosaurs, Lynn Leitch, Scot Ritchie, Transportation and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.