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Traction Man is Here
by Mini Grey
Book Jacket
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780375931918 The title's handsome, square-jawed action figure, uniformed in ""dazzle-painted battle pants,"" takes on many risky assignments. With sly good humor, British author-illustrator Grey gives life both to Traction Man and the young boy orchestrating his adventures. Her illustrations show a cheerfully disheveled home, teeming with raw material for imaginative play. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
School Library Journal (c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780375931918 PreS-Gr 2-This imaginative and very funny romp through the fantasy play of a young boy features his newly acquired action figure. Square-jawed and equipped with combat boots, scuba gear, space suit, and camouflage, Traction Man overcomes evil pillows, dastardly brooms, a poisonous dishcloth, and a wicked spade. But he and his little scrub-brush pet seem to be no match for Granny, who presents the action figure with a nerdy knitted green romper suit and bonnet. The evil-doers laugh at his silly get-up until Scrubbing Brush unravels the yarn to help Traction Man save a clutch of hapless spoons and he is once more the heroic figure. The angular, full-color art sweeps across the pages and perfectly animates the antics of Traction Man and his enemies. Grey has a way of exactly catching the nuances of a child's ability to turn even the most common object into a friend or looming foe in the never-ending battle between good and evil. This fresh, funny hero and Grey's celebration of a child's imagination definitely have traction.-Marge Loch-Wouters, Menasha's Public Library, WI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. Traction Man is ready for anything—but can he overcome the gift of an all-in-one knitted green romper suit with matching bonnet? Traction Man is most definitely an action figure, NOT a doll: His accessories include a sub-aqua suit, a space suit, a warfare shirt and a deep-sea diving suit. As narrated by the little boy who receives him for Christmas, his life is one adventure after another, but Granny's gift of the odious all-in-one knitted green romper suit with matching bonnet is almost too much for this doughty hero, until faithful companion Scrubbing Brush leads him to an ingenious solution. The intentionally overwrought voice-over is just exactly right, as are the comic-book style panels and the impossibly square-jawed hero. Occasional full-bleed spreads place Traction Man in his context with his owner (and parental admonishments occasionally and appropriately intrude), but for the most part, he and Scrubbing Brush are allowed the liberty to develop fully in their own right, their owner's imagination giving them all the life their readers will want. An absolutely, hilariously, dead-on perfect celebration of the relationship between child and toy. (Picture book. 5-8) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Publishers Weekly (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved 9780375831911 A cluttered house, lovingly rendered in comic-book panels by Grey (The Very Smart Pea and the Princess-to-Be), provides a perilous landscape for the titular square-jawed action figure. Readers infer Traction Man's origins from a "Dear Santa" letter on the title page ("I expect you know about what happened to my old Traction Man and the Terrible Parachute Accident") and a gift-box on a sleeping boy's bed. The new Traction Man, replete with special outfits, soon meets trouble in a flowerbed and among dirty dishes: "Traction Man is diving in the foamy waters of the Sink (wearing his Sub-Aqua Suit....) Oh, no! This Poisonous Dishcloth will envelop Traction Man and suffocate him!" Pursued by the glaring, squidlike Dishcloth, Traction Man is pulled to safety by a "brave little Scrubbing Brush," portrayed as a doglike sidekick with bristles for feet. Brown-paper thought balloons with italic type indicate the real-time story line; "I think it's someone's bathtime..." signals the hero's encounter with the Mysterious Toes, which he tickles into submission. Artful watercolor panels alternate with full-page compositions, and the keyed-up narrative is printed on torn graph-paper scraps for a casual, homemade effect. Grey sets the events on a damp English Christmas, but the holiday takes the back seat to the boy's implied stage-managing of Traction Man and transformation of ordinary objects. Will Traction Man rescue the quivering Cupcake from the villainous Doctor Sock? Stay tuned. Ages 4-8. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Book list From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission. 9780375931918 PreS-Gr. 2. Opening a present on Christmas morning, a boy finds the latest Traction Man action figure, who takes on an adventurous life of his own: diving into the soapy, underwater world of the kitchen sink; escaping the Poisonous Dishcloth ; and adopting a brave little scrubbing brush as his pet. Later, Granny gives Traction Man a present: a hand-knitted green suit, complete with tie-on knit cap. Despite his obvious humiliation, Traction Man undertakes another rescue mission and triumphs once again. Though children's toys have come to life in many picture books, they are more typically soft toys and the stories usually veer toward sentimentality rather than adventure. Brightened with colorful washes and replete with patterns, the detailed illustrations show Traction Man in action, sometimes stiffly doll-like, sometimes more expressive and human, but always worth watching. Setting up the child as the creator of Traction Man's secondary world and dramatizing his narrative play, Grey portrays with precision and wit the sort of inventive thinking that toys can inspire in children. --Carolyn Phelan Copyright 2005 Booklist