Roto and Roy: Helicopter Heroes

Little, Brown. Feb. 2022. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780316534963.
PreS-K–Told in rhyming couplets, this is a thrilling tale of an out-of-control fire, starring dark-skinned Roy Thunder and his green-eyed sidekick, Roto the Helicopter. A lightning strike in a canyon sparks an inferno that the pair have been called upon to quell. Bright cartoon illustrations reveal how Roto uses her long hose to suck up water from a lake to quench the blaze. Though the team has to swing between the lake and fire 10 times—the illustrations depict their path—they are victorious in extinguishing it. When the pair are heading home after completing their task, they observe a small dog in a precarious position, so they work together again to perform another heroic feat. Large digital illustrations set off sound words and onomatopoeia that add even more life to the exciting tale and increase the read-aloud quotient. Images appear in a variety of sizes.
VERDICT Reminiscent of Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel, Duskey Rinker’s story of a human and a machine as a superhero team will be entertaining to youngsters.

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