Cool Off and Ride!: A Trolley Trip to Beat the Heat (Hardcover)

Cool Off and Ride!: A Trolley Trip to Beat the Heat By Claudia Friddell, Jenn Harney (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Claudia Friddell, Jenn Harney (Illustrator)
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This historical picture book about 1930s Baltimore residents beating the heat the old-fashioned way—by riding a trolley!— is filled with fascinating information on public transit and staying cool before the advent of air conditioning.

Everyone in Baltimore is hot and sticky, from little Hazel playing on the slide to the grandma knitting on the porch. So when evening comes, they all jump at the chance for a little "cool off and ride." The whole neighborhood–from the Taylor twins to Grandpa, and even the dog!—piles onto a breezy homemade roller coaster, a city trolley!

In this charming, rhythmic romp, Claudia Friddell and Jenn Harney take us back to a time before air conditioning when you had to cool off any way you could. And the Cool Off and Ride Program was certainly a popular way! More than 8,000 people rode the trolleys every evening in the summer. Taking the streetcar brought the whole neighborhood together, and everyone’s fares helped keep the Baltimore streetcars running. This STEAM title is a terrific read-aloud that will also educate kids about weather and the history of transit in the United States.

About the Author

Claudia Friddell is the author of several children’s books, including To the Front!: Clara Barton Braves the Battle of Antietam, Grace Banker and Her Hello Girls Answer the Call: The Heroic Story of WWI Telephone Operators, and Saving Lady Liberty: Joseph Pulitzer’s Fight for the Statue of Liberty. She has worked with children throughout her career, which included being a therapist, a school counselor, and a teacher.

Jenn Harney is the illustrator for CATastrophe!: A Story of Patterns, “Smelly” Kelly and His Super Senses: How James Kelly’s Nose Saved the New York City Subway, and Probably a Narwhal. She has worked as both an author and illustrator of children’s literature for over twenty years.

Praise For…

"Friddell’s songlike text captures the city’s various characters on this summer day...All are invited to “cool off and ride” in a repeated refrain. Retro illustrations capture an atmosphere of hot weather in an old-school neighborhood and show a multiracial cast of characters finding a variety of ways to cope with the weather. While the premise here will undoubtedly have local appeal, any child who has experienced summer heat will understand the need to escape it and enjoy this rhythmic, lyrical tale...A gently humorous depiction of a city’s effort to beat the heat." —Kirkus Reviews

"Harney’s digital art captures the wilting warmth as curls of heat and steam waft through the pink, yellow, and red illustrations, evoking a sweltering heat and air that feels so thick you could practically see it. The bouncing, rhythmic text visits a variety of the city’s overheated folks, giving readers a playful look at the setting...An entertaining selection for families and kiddos seeking refuge from summer in the chilled library air." —The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
Product Details
ISBN: 9781635926842
ISBN-10: 163592684X
Publisher: Calkins Creek
Publication Date: July 11th, 2023
Pages: 32
Language: English