I Saw an Ant on the Railroad Track

I Saw an Ant on the Railroad Track

3.8 355
by Joshua Prince, Macky Pamintuan
     
 

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Lively rhythm and rhyme, and alluring art, carry children off on a captivating journey along the railroad tracks. There they meet a hungry little ant and the gentle giant of a switchman who cares for him. "The percussive, theatrical text and largerthanlife pictures result in a madetoorder…  See more details below

Overview

Have more fun with your NOOK BOOK-
Now with READALOUD and POPUP text!
Lively rhythm and rhyme, and alluring art, carry children off on a captivating journey along the railroad tracks. There they meet a hungry little ant and the gentle giant of a switchman who cares for him. "The percussive, theatrical text and largerthanlife pictures result in a madetoorder readaloud." -Publishers Weekly

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Can a brawny railroad switchman named Jack do his job in time to save an oblivious ant that's traveling "eastbound... on a westbound track" from getting smacked by a freight train? Even very young readers will initially wonder why conscientious Jack doesn't simply pick up the ant and move him to safety, but Prince's debut book offers enough diversions that most youngsters should be willing to suspend disbelief and embrace the tall-tale spirit of the story. The comic drama escalates as Jack discovers, "The switch was stuck!/ Oh, ruin to wrack!/ Those cold steel wheels/ would soon attack/ that wrong-way ant on the way-wrong track/ just out a-searching for a snack!" But the ant's stomach turns out to be its salvation: spotting Jack's sandwich, it leaps from the track just in time to avoid the train and enjoy a genial picnic with Jack. Pamintuan's slick pictures emit an almost palpable muscularity and tongue-in-cheek sense of sweeping horizon; the illustrator seems to be simultaneously channeling a bit of the spirit of Grant Wood and A Bug's Life. Prince sets himself quite a challenge by making the "ack" sound predominate in the rhymes, but the sound fits both the premise and heart of the story. The percussive, theatrical text and larger-than-life pictures result in a made-to-order read-aloud. Ages 2-5. (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Joshua Prince's first book is the tongue-in-cheek account of switchman Jack's valiant efforts to save the life of an ant in search of a snack strolling the wrong way on a railroad track. When a train comes barreling down that same track, Jack tosses his own snack and goes into action. Yet with all his strength he cannot pull the switch to change the train to the other track. Oh, horrors! Will the ant get whacked? Little ones should giggle with glee at Jack's titanic attempts to solve a simple problem. Luckily the ant is every bit as single-minded as his would-be savior. Prince's rollicking rhyme clickety-clacks right along, while Macky Pamintuan's artwork—with the slick, air-brushed look of a computer game—succeeds in setting a brawny Jack and huge engine in counterpoint to the miniscule ant. It's a bravura performance for a first-time out advertising writer—and great fun to boot. 2006, Sterling, Ages 2 to 6.
—Kathleen Karr
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1-When Switchman Jack sees a black ant strolling down the railroad track in search of a snack, he tries to reroute a 10-ton freight train. However, the switch is stuck, and, just when readers start to worry that there will be an ant-astrophe, the tale takes a turn: "that ant.../made a beeline for my brown lunch sack/as the train whooshed by, screaming.../CLICKETY-CLACK!" The story builds effectively to a screeching crescendo, but some of the vocabulary, such as "ruin to wrack," might stump children. The big, bold color caricatures have a timeless feel, in keeping with the text. Pamintuan uses changing perspectives to draw readers into the plight of the ant as it is confronted by the enormous smoking train. When the ambling insect spies Jack's sandwich on the ground, it gets a determined look in its eye. The folksy rhyme would be most effective as a read-aloud; in the hands of a talented storyteller, the conflict could take on enormous proportions.-Susan E. Murray, Glendale Public Library, AZ Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
When an ant walking east, "tickety-tack," meets a train heading west, clickety-clack," switchman Jack tries to head off the impending smack. Pamintuan illustrates Prince's consonantal verse with sunny, smoothly finished ground-level scenes featuring a Disneyesque ant with white gloves and large human eyes, strolling along oblivious both to the huge locomotive roaring up and portly, blue-collar Jack's struggles to switch the track. But then, at the last microsecond, the ant spots Jack's nearby sack of snacks and hops to safety. Of like-sounding outings there is no lack (see, for instance, Rob and Amy Spence's Clickety Clack, illustrated by Margaret Spengler, 1999), but there's enough melodrama here to keep readers coming back. (Picture book. 6-8)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781402796258
Publisher:
Sterling
Publication date:
04/05/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
24
Sales rank:
235,478
File size:
11 MB
Note:
This product may take a few minutes to download.
Age Range:
3 - 5 Years

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