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Pivotal Kids Book

Rattletrap car

Author:  Phyllis Root

Illustrator:  Jill Barton

$7.99Buy now


Also available from fishpond.com.auRandom House, The Book depository


Free for members of the Pivotal Gold Book Club


On a hot summer day, Junie and Jakie suggested a trip to the lake. Poppa worries about whether or not their old car will make it ("It doesn't go fast and it doesn't go far"), but the family decides to give it a try. They haven't gone far when "boomsssssssss. The tire went flat." Junie knows what to do-she puts her beach ball in the place of the wheel, sticking it on tight with chocolate marshmallow fudge delight. Then, "whumpety whomp!"-the floor falls off. This time, Jakie knows just what to do. A series of other near-disasters follows, each finding a silly remedy with an item that had been packed for the outing, and they make it to the lake. Cumulative stories are most successful when they have a little twist or surprise at the end, and there isn't one here, but the bouncy, creative language more than makes up for that lack. The internal rhymes, alliteration, and creative car sounds make a perfect read-aloud. The watercolor illustrations are full of action as the rattletrap car bounces off the road and seems to rush off the page. The words for the car sounds bounce, too, in their larger, uneven fonts. The illustrations contribute humorous detail capturing the family's alternating despair, inventiveness, and glee at moving again.


Released:   April 12, 2004

Publisher: Candlewick

Ages: 4-8

Themes: Funny, Rhyme, cars, Onomatopoeia



Formats:  Also available as a Big book


3 excellent Library/Classroom Suggestions

Lesson Idea on using onomatopoeia

Examples of Art by Jill Barton

Read and listen to the book online

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