A Bus Called Heaven

by Bob Graham

A bus breaks down and is abandoned on Stella’s street. The bus’s destination... read more

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)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2013

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