cover image Bicycle Bash

Bicycle Bash

Alison Farrell. Chronicle, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4521-7462-4

The Metropolitan Bicycle Museum is having a big celebration, and everyone Etta the elephant knows is going—after all, who would pass up a chance to ride a bicycle inside a museum? It’s an expansively magical and interactive environment, with a display that recaps bicycle history, rooms for pedal-powered air and water vehicles, a model house powered entirely by bicycles, a complicated racetrack, and a hall filled with adaptive bikes. Rendered in gouache and mixed media, the busy pages are expertly choreographed, with a fine sense of line, color, and whimsy; dialogue balloons and narrator cues provide additional incentives to linger on each page (“A koala mom looks for all five of her joeys. Who is going where?”). While readers can follow Ella’s journey through the event—which culminates in a thrilling surprise engineered by her Aunt Ellen—the real attraction is Farrell’s (Runaway Signs) endless imaginings of the ways that animals might ride pedal-driven vehicles: a short list includes a rabbit parent with an impressively long, bunny-filled bike trailer; a cat on a pontoon bike (“So fun! And I don’t even like water!”); and a pig on a bike-powered blender. Ages 3–5. [em]Agent: Elena Giovinazzo, Pippin Properties. (Mar.) [/em]