________________ CM . . . . Volume XXIV Number 35. . . .May 11, 2018


Zoom Along.

Jessica Phillips.
Toronto, ON: Kids Can Press, 2018.
16 pp., board book, $16.99.
ISBN 978-1-77138-797-2.

Preschool / Ages 1-3.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.

*** /4



Like her earlier I Can Roar!, Phillips’ Zoom Along is an interactive board book that employs a die-cut hole and a mirror on the inside of the book’s front and back covers. Whereas I Can Roar! invited youngsters to look through the hole at the mirror and to become the faces of various animals while making the sounds associated with each of the animals, with Zoom Along, youngsters can imagine themselves being engaged in one of 14 activities. Most of these involve their being the face of someone whose job it is to drive some sort of vehicle. And so a child can be a firefighter and drive a fire truck, a pilot who flies a plane, a captain sailing a boat, a farmer who rides a tractor, a construction worker unloading a dump truck, or an astronaut blasting off to the moon in a rocket. Three activities could be characterized as being less common, that being an explorer who climbs mountains, an adventurer who flies hot air balloons or a musher guiding a dogsled. A couple of the activities are less adult-centric, such as being a cyclist pedalling a bike or a racer on a push scooter.

     The simple two line text appears at the bottom of each page, with one line stating what you are, and the second saying what you do.

am a driver.
I steer a car.

     Additionally, at the top of the page, one or two “sound” words associated with the activity appear. Driving a car provides a “Vroom!”, but driving a fire truck produces a “WHEE-oo!” and riding a bike a “Brrring! Brrring!”

      As appropriate to the age of the intended audience, Phillips’ illustrations are uncluttered and straightforward. A nice touch is her addition of headwear appropriate to the activity. Consequently, the bike and scooter riders have helmets while the musher wears a toque. Only the car driver gets to be hatless.

      The text content of Zoom Along subtly adds to children’s vocabulary store, and the sturdy volume should stand up well to incidental abuse. Definitely a home purchase, this board book should be in all libraries serving this preschool group.


Dave Jenkinson, CM’s editor, lives in Winnipeg, MB.

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