By Chris Gall
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, $16.99, 32 pages

In this book the prehistoric dinotrux are relegated to a museum and are subjected to all the things that children, visited the museum, do to museum exhibits. Then many species of dinotrux escape and have their adventures throughout the city. The trux blend the properties of dinosaurs and also of machines. They have sounds and behaviors that provide just a hint of naughtiness or grossness at which kids old enough to read the book will snicker. The book ends with creative thought about new purposes for old things.

Revenge of the Dinotrux is illustrated with “30W synthetic motor oil, 4-bolt mains, and a competition clutch.” The illustrations are rich in texture and detail. The narrative is suitable for the early independent reader with a little help on “scientific” names like velocitractors. This is the sort of book that will tempt children to daydream in class and draw machine monsters in art class or on their book covers. This book is likely to appeal to boys but also to girls who are not constrained by gender stereotypes. Princesses in pink may not respond to the very mechanical nature of the story.

Reviewed by Brenda Searle