My autistic 3.5 year old is a big fan of the Little Blue Truck books, and this new one is no exception. Like all of the books in this series it's full of whimsical illustrations, catchy rhymes, and a great yet simple story that young readers can relate to.
Unfortunately there are several aspects of this book that disappointed me. First and foremost is that unlike previous books, this one is not available (at the time of writing this) in board book format. The hardcover we received is not meant for small, rough hands that like to eagerly turn pages. Consequently, several of our pages are already severely bent and creased. My son struggles with the thin and delicate pages, resulting in him often unintentionally skipping pages when he uses his palm to turn them (with board books he is easily able to use thumb and index finger to turn pages).
As a parent, I also find the story to be sub par to the other books in the series. The original Little Blue Truck is by far the most enjoyable book of the bunch, but we've also loved countless re-reads of Little Blue Truck Leads the Way, Little Blue Truck's Halloween, and Little Blue Truck's Christmas. Each of these books has a unique theme and feature. The Halloween book has lift the flaps, the Christmas book has fun twinkling lights (and lots of counting), and Leads the Way is a unique story that doesn't feel like a rehash of Little Blue Truck.
Good Night Little Blue Truck doesn't have anything unique that makes it memorable, and therefore isn't a must have for anyone other than die hard Little Blue Truck fans. The rhymes are at times painfully awkward and the story overall doesn't flow nearly as smoothly as the other aforementioned books. I'm also disappointed that the content is far more babyish than previous books. Many of the pages are dedicated to short, simple animal sounds and imagery lacking sentences.
These issues combined with the lack of sturdiness have left me greatly disappointed. Nonetheless, my kid still loves this story, at least for the time being, and doesn't even seem to mind that his pages are creased. But for the price I paid ($13) and the reputation this series has built for themselves, I expected better. Here's to hoping the next in the series lives up its name.