for A Bus Called Heaven by Bob Graham
A bus breaks down and is abandoned on Stella’s street. The bus’s destination sign says “Heaven,” although Stella, a pale, quiet girl, takes her thumb from her mouth and notes, “Mommy, that old bus is as sad as a whale on a beach.” Neighbors push the bus off the street into Stella’s yard and everyone pitches in to help clean it up. It soon becomes a neighborhood gathering spot, sporting a portable soccer table, goldfish, comics. Snails leave silver trails as they crawl up the bus’s side. A pair of birds builds a nest in the engine. People gather to play games and share stories. And Stella? She plays table soccer. A lot. So on the day a tow truck arrives to haul the bus to the junkyard (the bus obstructs the sidewalk, and that is “against regulations”), she challenges the junkyard boss to a game: winner take all. Bob Graham’s idea of heaven is community in this unabashedly uplifting look at a multicultural, multigenerational neighborhood. Graham’s lyrical storytelling inhabits every word of the narrative and every line and brush stroke of the delightfully detailed illustrations. (Ages 3–7)
CCBC Choices 2013. © Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2013. Used with permission.
How did it get there? Everyone wonders - but nobody knows. Then, out from the shadows steps Stella. She climbs onto the bus and, in a moment, sees everything that it could become: 'This bus could be ours', she says. And so, the lonely old bus - with the help of some colourful graffiti - becomes a hub of activity!
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.