The Old Truck

Ages: 4 - 8Publisher: NortonAuthor: Jarrett PumphreyIllustrator: Jerome Pumphrey


In their stunning picture book debut, author/ illustrators Jarrett Pumphrey and Jerome Pumphrey pair a trusty old work truck with dedicated young farm girl in this ode to dreams, determination, and resilience.

“On a small farm, an old truck worked hard. The old truck worked long.” When the truck is totally worn out, it is parked beside the red barn where weeds grow up around it in warm seasons, and snow covers it in winters. The old truck has adventures in its dreams, however, which include the small African-American girl who has grown up on her family’s farm.

But it’s the truck, not the people, the text describes. The visually engaging, flat, stylized illustrations lead the way.  Before the story even opens, we see the pregnant woman whose daughter grows up as the truck ages and wears out. The smiling girl becomes an adult, inherits the farm, repairs the truck, and has her own little girl to interact with the once again hard-working truck. Deceptively simple, this gentle generational story has depth, love, and power.


Kemie Nix ©2020 Parents’ Choice

Kemie Nix is Chairman of Children’s Literature for Children (CLC), a non-profit, tax-exempt, educational organization dedicated to bringing children and books together. Mrs. Nix, a senior book editor for Parents’ Choice, has a remarkable sense of selecting books children love to read.

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