While most of the children’s books I’ve had the opportunity to review have been for children who have started to read already, All Aboard the Ark is a great book to read to infants and toddlers who maybe aren’t quite ready to read yet, but certainly recognize pictures in a book and who may even be learning basic words.
The book is certainly not a theological exposition of the story of Noah and the Ark, but of course that’s not what it’s meant to be (you won’t even find Noah in the book). But that’s okay. The main point of the story is to serve as a bedtime story using the story of the Ark as a backdrop. This is why the author of the book takes little artistic liberties (such as having all the animals taking a bath together in a giant wooden bathtub, and having all the animals taking a nap together under the stars once they get on dry ground to close the book). But the main points of the story are there–there are animals that go onto the ark two-by-two, there’s a big flood where the animals are safe, there’s a dove who finds an olive branch, and God makes a rainbow in his love.
The words are cute and easy-to-read. They’re simple rhymes such as “Rain pours down / We start to float / We’re nice and / warm inside our boat”. They’re printed in large colorful type.
But the star of the book are the pictures. They’re colorful hand-drawn cartoon illustrations that are a great balance of cute and funny. There are certainly a lot of details in each picture that’ll engage your youngster. The animals go two-by-two, of course; there’s a giraffe, an elephant, a turtle, a bunny, and a lion all happily enjoying their ride.
The board book format is durable and will survive many, many readings. The combination of simple but catchy rhymes and fun illustrations makes this a great book for the little one in your life.