cover image Railroad Hank

Railroad Hank

Lisa Moser, illus. by Benji Davies. Random, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-375-86849-8

Railroad Hank has "a fine little train" and a good heart, so he's on a run to Granny Brett's place to cheer her up. As he stops at farms along the way, each neighbor offers something to make the thoughtful gesture even more special. But Hank seems to have been absent from school the day basic biology was taught. "Where do you get eggs?" he asks Missy May, and when told they come from hens, "of course," Hank scoops up a passel of squawking poultry and leaves the eggs behind. Variations on this interchange are repeated three more times, so when Hank finally arrives at Granny's, he has an entire farm (including apple trees) in tow and all the proprietors giving chase. Hank is a well-meaning bumbler of the first order, and Moser's (Perfect Soup) dialogue-driven story practically demands to be read with a sunny twang. Davies's (Dino Parade) warmhearted, energetic drawings are a good match, bringing to mind classic Golden Books while also evincing a veteran animator's sense of composition and color. Ages 3%E2%80%938. Illustrator's agent: Lucie Luddington, the Bright Agency. (Sept.)