Review by School Library Journal Review
PreS-Gr 1--New to the job, fire engine Flash might just be the smallest rescue vehicle in town, but he's also one of the most ambitious. Every time the alarm sounds at the fire station, Flash is eager to get to the scene, but by the time he arrives, the fire is always too big or too tall. Other times, Flash just can't get there fast enough. When there's a fire at the local animal shelter, Flash finally gets to prove himself. The variety of vehicles and story line make this book a great choice for preschoolers. Children will enjoy guessing where Flash is headed next, pointing out each type of vehicle, and discussing how the little engine feels. Rendered in digital media, the illustrations don't bring anything new to the table, but they use perspective to effectively convey tone and emotion. As the other vehicles complete their rescues, Flash sits off to the side. Each time he sets out for a new location, his determined face and sound effects have a full page. Fans of Kate McMullan and Stephen Savage will love Flash. VERDICT A story about never giving up, Calvert's latest is well-suited for large picture book collections.--Liz Anderson, DC Public Library
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review
A little fire engine discovers what it's good at by eliminating what it is not.Who knew disappointment could be such a keen teaching tool? Narrator Flash is eager to demonstrate firefighting prowess, but every attempt to "save the day" yields bubkes. First Flash is too little to handle a fire at the airport (Crash, an airport crash tender, handles that one). Next Flash is too short to help a tall building that's on fire (that honor goes to Laddie, a turntable ladder). Finally, an airplane and a foam tender together solve a forest-fire problem. Only when a bridge is suddenly blocked by snow, with all the other trucks on the wrong side of it, does Flash have the opportunity to save a pet shelter that's ablaze. (Readers will note characters in shirtsleeves at the beginning of the book, so this is a very unexpected snowstorm.) Calvert deftly finds a new way to introduce kids to different kinds of firefighting vehicles by setting up Flash in opposition to situations where it's just not the best truck for the job. The anthropomorphized engines and planes irritatingly include unnecessary eyelashes on trucks with feminine pronouns, but this is mitigated by the fact that the girls get cool names like "Crash" and save the day first. Enthusiastic if unremarkable digital art presents both firefighters and citizens in an array of genders and races.An innocuous telling, sure to slip in effortlessly with other firetruck books. (Picture book. 3-6) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.