Summer Wheels

Summer Wheels

by Eve Bunting, Thomas B. Allen
     
 

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The Bicycle Man lends bikes to the neighborhood kids for free, and Lawrence and Brady ride them all summer long. But when a new kid takes advantage of the Bicycle Man, Lawrence and Brady discover that there’s one thing that the Man likes more than bikes: kids. "An inspiring story."--Kirkus Reviews

Overview


The Bicycle Man lends bikes to the neighborhood kids for free, and Lawrence and Brady ride them all summer long. But when a new kid takes advantage of the Bicycle Man, Lawrence and Brady discover that there’s one thing that the Man likes more than bikes: kids. "An inspiring story."--Kirkus Reviews

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This early chapter book gently reinforces the credo that ``with freedom comes responsibility''--even in the middle of summer vacation. Lawrence and Brady love to spend their days riding and doing bicycle stunts. Luckily the boys have befriended the kindly Bicycle Man who fixes up the vehicles and loans them out to neighborhood children--as long as they follow the rules: ``Sign a bike out and sign a bike in. And if it breaks while you have it, you fix it.'' But when a ragamuffin boy signs out the best bike under the name ``Abrehemstet Lincoln'' and doesn't return it, Lawrence and Brady aim to teach him some respect. Bunting's text is a bit short on action, though her characters' personalities shine. Her dialogue rings true, and she deftly sidesteps pedanticism in her handling of confrontations. Allen's sketchy pastels, rendered primarily in grays and browns, succeed on two levels: the muted tones give a true sense of a working garage and also amplify the gritty realities of underprivileged urban children alluded to in the text. Every neighborhood should have a Bicycle Man. Ages 6-10. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
Gr 1-4-- The Bicycle Man lends bicycles to the neighborhood kids with two rules: they must be returned by four o'clock, and if they break, the kids must fix them. Lawrence, the African-American narrator, and his friend Brady spend their summer days riding. When a new kid doesn't return a bike, the two friends find him and make him take it back. In the process, they discover that his toughness is just a mask for his need for adult attention, and that the Man cares more about kids than bicycles. This gentle, warm story, divided into chapters, has an understated message. The immediacy of the present-tense narration and the colloquial dialogue help to create the sense of freedom and space that is peculiar to summer. Allen's pastel drawings shimmer with the heat as they capture the energy and movement of the boys on their bikes. The numerous illustrations, generous amount of white space, and good-sized print make this a perfect choice for beginning chapter-book readers. --Susan Giffard, Englewood Public Library, NJ

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780152009885
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
05/28/1996
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
48
Sales rank:
622,361
Product dimensions:
7.50(w) x 9.50(h) x 0.13(d)
Lexile:
460L (what's this?)
Age Range:
6 - 9 Years

Meet the Author

EVE BUNTING has written over two hundred books for children, including the Caldecott Medal-winning Smoky Night, illustrated by David Diaz, The Wall, Fly Away Home, and Train to Somewhere. She lives in Southern California.

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