Little Taco Truck
Children’s Picture Book Review –
When my daughters and I were asked to review Little Taco Truck, by Tanya Valentine, we jumped at the chance because…well, we are foodies as well as readers and put the two together and we are sold. Furthermore, TACOS! Need I say more?
Today is release day for this darling, fun children’s picture book and I’m so happy I can tell you all about it. We should celebrate with tacos now that I think about it! I digress.
Even though I have girls, and my 11-year-old and I had previously loved Dragons Love Tacos, this book featured food trucks, which could be focused more toward boys, but yet we really didn’t notice that when reading it – and my daughter certainly didn’t. That’s just my afterword thinking. There were female food trucks as well as male and it seemed to work across genders so if you have a little girl loves food or cute illustrations, I don’t think you should pay it mind in this day and age that it’s a vehicle-driven (no pun intended…or is there?) story.
The message in this story crosses gender and ethnicity boundaries teaching an important lesson about inclusiveness, overcoming shyness or feelings of being left out or pushed out, and ultimately, also standing up for yourself to get what you want.
As Little Taco Truck feels pushed out by bigger trucks with each passing day, and food that could far outweigh his simple tacos, he stakes his claim after problem solving. Though I am not so sure about his “stomping his wheels I’m here” mentality and anger, I suppose that’s one way to say, “I’m here and I’m staying.” It’s admirable to stand your ground sometimes. I think possibly I’d have toned down it down to have stated it in a calm manner, but I did like the reactions of the other trucks in their apologies and in their willingness to make room for all.
In the world today, there are important lessons here about many various cultures and personalities living amid each other and that we must work to include everyone and see their side of the equation.
The illustrations are lovely colorful and bright with a Hispanic flair that matches the taco truck being the main character. I liked how the illustrator Jorge Martin drew the food and sometimes with faces – but then I’m like I really don’t want to eat the falafel with faces! Haha! It was very cute though and I enjoyed looking at the art very much, which is a huge sell to me in a picture book. I believe the illustrations, with their joyful aura and colorful nature will largely appeal to young kids. I loved the flowers in the pots, and his attention to detail; I loved the little falafel, faces and all, and the tacos. My daughter loved the crayfish on top of the gumbo truck, for instance. It was heart-warming work and also made us hungry! Now, we want to go to this street and partake of all the food trucks – he made the community feel of them all very vibrant and real.
Overall, this was an engaging story for young readers who are being read to or who are captivated by pictures with their stories. This would be a bright story with a good lesson to read during story times or in the classroom. A happy ending is always a good ending!
With a colorful bustle in the illustrations, a good resolution to a problem in the writing, and captivation personalities within the writing and the art, Little Taco Truck is one you’ll want to snatch up for a morning read with a child, then if possible, take a walk to a food truck for lunch!
Little Taco Truck, Synopsis and Info –
Print Length: 40 pages
Publisher: Schwartz & Wade
Publication Date: April 2, 2019
Sold by: Random House LLC
Dragons Love Tacos meets Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site, LITTLE TACO TRUCK is an irresistibly kid-friendly read-aloud about a little taco truck that is having trouble finding a place to park. It’s released today (April 2, 2019)!
Little Taco Truck serves up tasty treats to the hungry workers on Union Street…until one day, Miss Falafel shows up with her baked pita bread and crunchy chickpea fritters–and parks in his space. The next day, Miss Falafel is there again, and this time she’s brought Gumbo Jumbo and Annie Arepas with her. Little Taco Truck’s headlights dim. What if people like Gumbo Jumbo’s spicy stew and Annie Arepas’s warm cornbread cakes more than they like his tacos? When more trucks arrive the following day and there’s no space left for Little Taco Truck, he swishes his wipers to hide his tears and heads home. At last, with some ingenuity and help from new friends, Little Taco Truck wins back his coveted parking spot. And guess what? There is room enough for everyone!
Packed with flavor and savory smells, this irresistible read-aloud about friendship and determination is perfect for even the youngest truck and taco fans.
Author Tanya Valentine, Biography –
Tanya Valentine is an active member of SCBWI and The Atlanta Writer’s Club. She is the author of All Bears Need Love, a picture book about interracial adoption, and Little Taco Truck, an irresistible read-aloud about friendship and determination.
Her dream food truck would offer every single kind of Italian food. It would be amazing. And enormous. S
he lives in Atlanta with her husband, two kids, one cat and a turtle.
Find out more about Tanya –
Illustrator Jorge Martin, Biography –
Jorge Martin is the author and illustrator of I’m Hungry and the illustrator of A Cat Is Better by Linda Joy Singleton.
His perfect food truck would serve Spanish omelets – made with eggs, potato, and onion. Simply delicious!
He has traveled and lived around the world. After more than a decade in London, and has now returned to his native country and lives in a tiny hamlet in northern rural Spain, population twenty.
Find out more about Jorge –
Thanks for reading! I was given a media review copy of Little Taco Truck by the publisher but this is my honest review.