By: Sue Lowell Gallion

Illustrated by: Lisa Manuzak Wiley

Published: September 22, 2020

Publisher: Aladdin


Axle is a shiny red car fresh off the assembly line. It’s time for the cars to head out to the dealership for their first ever adventures, but Axle isn’t nearly as excited as the rest of the cars.

While the rest of the cars are getting loaded onto the transport trucks, Axle is nowhere to be found. He is way too nervous to get on the truck and finds ways to stall…literally. Earlene, the transport truck encourages him to climb on board. When they arrive at the dealership, Earlene realizes Axle needs some extra-special attention.

For kids that get nervous about new adventures or kids that love cars, this is such a great book that also shares an important lesson about trying new things and believing in yourself. Axle is shy and apprehensive about leaving his only home, the assembly plant, He is afraid to get his wheels out on the open road and explore. But with some encouragement and a desperate situation, Axle rises to the occasion.

The illustrations are super fun, vivid, and full of personality. Kids who loved the Disney Cars movie will love the car characters in this book. The limited words on the pages will help early readers begin reading it themselves, especially the fun speech bubbles from other vehicles.

The scenes along the highway are gorgeous including desert flatlands and mountainous hills and valleys. Even the inside cover of the book is a mixture of tire tracks. I highly recommend this book for kids who easily are nervous about new situations and places or fans of cars. Another winning book from Sue Lowell Gallion.

When Sue Lowell Gallion was growing up in Kansas City, vacation always meant a car trip. Her family traveled from coast to coast, never missing a stop at a scenic overlook or historical marker. Sue and her husband, Terry, and their kids loved to hit the road, too, especially curvy highways in the Rocky Mountains. Her family’s favorite color for a car is bright red, just like Axle. Sue is the author of the Pug & Pig series. Her other 2020 releases are her first nonfiction board book, OUR WORLD: A FIRST BOOK OF GEOGRAPHY, and the third in the Tip and Tucker early reader series, TIP AND TUCKER: PAW PAINTERS. For more information, visit

For a storytime kit, click HERE.

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Thanks to the publisher for sending a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. This review is my honest opinion. If you choose to make a purchase through the above links, I may receive a small commission without you having to pay a cent more for your purchase.

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