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TruckDogs Hardcover – March 1, 2004


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Hardcover: 158 pages
  • Publisher: Harry N. Abrams; First Edition edition (March 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0810950316
  • ISBN-13: 978-0810950313
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.3 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,649,760 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Beloved Australian author and illustrator Graeme Base of Animalia, and Eleventh Hour fame tries his hand at writing something longer--"a novel in four bites"--but with mixed results.

Set in the imaginary outback world of the TruckDog (a wild evolutionary hybrid that's either "an animal with an engine" or "a car with floppy ears and a wet nose"), Base's story starts out promisingly weird, but then promptly chases its tail in overcomplicated exposition and character development. Kids will probably take to the notion of a fuel-tanker dachshund or a drag-racer greyhound initially (they'll certainly pore over the 16 full-color plates illustrating various TruckDog "breeds"), but that attention will likely fade one-hundred pages into the convoluted and prosaic story about a town that needs to focus its bored, boisterous youth to fight off a gang of bandits.

Kids will likely love TruckDogs's rough-and-tumble descriptions, "Behind them stood a huge, snorting beast, solid muscle and steel, cruelly curved horns mounted above massive bony fenders: the TruckRam from hell." However, don't be surprised if disinterested young readers go tearing off mid-story to concoct TruckDog dramas of their own. (Ages 9 to 12) --Paul Hughes

From School Library Journal

Grade 5-8--Base moves into novels, leaving behind the richly illustrated and rhyming texts for which he is known, such as Animalia (1987) and Sign of the Seahorse (1992, both Abrams). Here, readers are treated every few pages to his imaginative and detailed color drawings of Australian outback creatures that are blends of animals and motorized vehicles, such as TruckSheep, TruckRoos, TruckBugs, and more. TruckDogs are the main characters in this story of a town that must overcome its generation gap to survive. The two generations are brought together by Rex, a wise drifter/mechanic who is a mixture of red setter and tractor. He helps the disapproving elders see that they cannot save their town from the lawless RottWheeler gang alone. And he helps the town's "Mongrel Pack" of youth (ages 11 to 14) to see that they can harness their energy and individual talents in positive ways. It's a great message, delivered in a captivating manner, with just two bumps in the road. First, reluctant or younger readers who are pulled in by the drawings, the dogs, and the cars might get bogged down in 50-page chapters, needing smaller, more manageable bites. The second hurdle is the Australian vocabulary, not all of which can be deduced from context, and some such words are important to understanding the story. Readers who can hang on during the bumps should enjoy the ride.--Laurie von Mehren, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Parma, OH
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

More About the Author

Graeme Base is one of the world's leading creators of picture books. His alphabet book, Animalia, received international acclaim when it was first published in 1986 and has sold more than two million copies. Graeme lives in Melbourne, Australia.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on June 23, 2005
Format: Hardcover
well, I was going on holiday and I went in a book shop in philidelphia airport (because the writing in mine was too small),I went to the back of the store where the kids books were and the book seemed to jump into my hands as soon as I saw it, I read the blurb and it sounded good so I asked dad if I could get it it was expensive, but worth it, he bought it and read it on the plane, it was so funny and well written I am reading it again now for the 3rd time!

My over all rating is 100000000000000 stars, the book is exellent!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Lane Young on May 6, 2004
Format: Hardcover
In this first novel, by acclaimed picture book writer, Base (Animelia, The 11th Hour) creates an imaginative world that combines animals and automobiles into such combinations a bulldozer and bulldog. The strength of the world carries the first half of the novel. Some readers might become bored by the plot featuring a band of evil TruckDogs taking over a town. This book, accompanied by twelve gorgeous illustrations should especially appeal to readers who enjoy machines. Base shows some promise as a novelist and this first effort will likely delight some readers with its inventive world and heavy doses of action.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on July 29, 2005
Format: Hardcover
After being kicked out from town will the mongrel gang return when the town is in danger from the DesertDogs. Or will they give town what they deserve.

Find out this and more by reading TruckDogs.

TruckDogs is a very good book with energetic characters like Sparky and quiet and headstrong characters like Rex and Hercules and great illustrations by Graeme Best. I think children aged 10-13 would really enjoy this book.
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By LouFla on August 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love all of Graeme Base's books starting with "The Eleventh Hour" which can fascinate children and adults. This book is a young person's novel that I bought for a young cousin who loves trucks and machinery. Can't wait to read it again!
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By Joanie on October 30, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a grandmother and a collecter of Graeme Base's books of which I have all of them signed by Graeme. I purchased this book for my nine year old grandson for Christmas. I am a great fan of Graeme's! We are unable to purchase the illustrated version of this book in Australia. My copy of Truck Dogs was also bought on line from Amazon.
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