Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Book Review - Monster Trucks


Monster Trucks: Tearing it Up

By: Brian Howell
Publisher: 21st Century
Publication Date: January 2014
ISBN: 978-1467721202
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: March 2014

Bob Chandler was into his Ford F-250 pickup truck, but unfortunately the parts he wanted were difficult to find. To remedy the situation, he “opened a four-wheel-drive parts shop in 1975,” a solution that gave him access to everything he needed. Apparently Bob was the experimental type and the bigger the better. The more he worked on his truck, the more powerful it became. Bob put the pedal to the metal and people decided to nickname him “Bigfoot,” a name that soon ended up on the side of his truck. With giant wheels on his pickup, it wasn’t long before Bob George “called Bigfoot a monster truck,” a name many youngsters these days are quite familiar with.

Bigfoot soon became very popular and quite famous in the Midwest. Things began to change for Bob Chandler when his truck was featured in a movie. He quickly discovered how easy it was to crush cars. Crrrunch! Needless to say, Bigfoot began performing before crowds of people. The “monster truck craze was underway,” but Bigfoot wasn’t the only competitor. Safety pays in many ways and by the time Chandler retired, he had “cofounded the Monster Truck Racing Association,” an organization to ensure safety among drivers and competitors.

The race was on and so was the mania surrounding monster trucks. Events cropped up around the world and included “races and freestyle contests.” The appearance of those trucks were a far cry from Chandler’s Ford F-250. In fact those tricky trucks are a big part of the excitement. El Toro Loco, the Monster Mutt, Maximum Destruction, the Prowler, and the Grave Digger can be checked out in the pages of this book. You’ll learn what it takes to be a monster truck driver, how the trucks are built, the kinds of stunts they can perform, the competitions, the drivers, how to get started in the sport, and you’ll learn many other interesting things about the sport of monster trucks!

This is an awesome look at the history and sport of monster trucks young fans will love. The eye-popping layout of the book is quite exciting and action packed. Monster trucks fly through the air as they race, crush those junk cars, and fly through the air. There’s a lot to be discovered and young monster truck fans will pore over these pages trying to get the scoop. There’s a two-page spread featuring Grave Digger, one that showcases the design and gives out the specs. There are numerous informative sidebars and captions that add to the text. For example, in “Creating the Track” we learn how a stadium is converted into a monster truck track. In the back of the book is an index, a glossary, and additional recommended book and website resources to explore.

Quill says: If you have a young monster truck fan, this is an exciting book that he or she will get lost in!