Denise Dowling Mortensen, , illus. by Melissa Iwai. . Clarion, $15 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-618-13537-0

Playing to kids' perennial fascination with vehicles, this bedtime book—Mortensen's debut—uses truncated rhyming verse to describe how a train, 18-wheel truck, fire engine, etc., slow down at the end of the day: "Jumbo jet plane/ cleared to land./ Downward, roaring/ turbofan./ Wheels on runway in a rush./ Grinding. Stopping. Resting./ Hush." The level of detail will suit preschoolers, as will the rhythms, but what will almost certainly command the audience's attention is Iwai's (Snuggle Mountain ) visual interpretation. Her velvety acrylics create a modest but effective story line, about a boy giving his toys a final spin before going to bed. Pictures of the boy alternate with images of the real-life vehicles. Readers meet the boy while he is busy with his toy trains; the next spread shows a sleek passenger train speeding across a bridge. The two strands meet in a fitting conclusion. A mother tucks the boy in bed and darkens his room ("Turn off motor,/ switch off light") as the text invites the "tired engine" to say good night. This sweet book will help motor-happy readers to put their own engines in idle. Ages 2-6. (Oct.)