Curious George and the Firefighters

Book review by
Barbara Schultz, Common Sense Media
Curious George and the Firefighters Book Poster Image
Adorable George makes firefighting chaotic and fun.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

Preschoolers and early graders will learn what's inside a fire station and what firefighters wear.

Positive Messages

Childlike curiosity and a sense of fun can ease a scary situation.

Positive Role Models & Representations

George is adorable, but he's no role model. Don't try this at home, kids.

Violence & Scariness

George ends up tagging along when the firefighters respond to an alarm, but the dangers of fire aren't described in the book.

Language

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Curious George and the Firefighters is one of the adorable little monkey's "new adventures," which were written and illustrated in the style of H.A. and Margret Rey after the deaths of the authors in 1977 and 1996, respectively. As in the original Curious George books, George's curiosity gets him into a little trouble; this time he ends up tagging along with firefighters responding to an alarm. The dangers of fire are not explained in the book, however, as these books are not necessarily meant to educate kids or keep them safe. This is a cute story that celebrates childlike curiosity and a sense of fun.

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What's the story?

When the man with the yellow hat takes Curious George on a field trip to a fire station, George's curiosity about the fire pole and protective clothing leads to his tagging along when the firefighters respond to fire in a pizza parlor. At first, George tries to help the firefighters, but the chief tells him to stay out of the way and sends him to an adjacent park. George sees a bucket of balls and begins juggling them. His antics entertain children, who might otherwise have been scared by the sirens and fire.

Is it any good?

Though the new adventures of Curious George aren't as detailed or fresh as the original books, George is always adorable, mischievous, and funny. The illustrations in this book, by Anna Grossnickle Hines, are wonderfully true to the original. Note that in the Kindle edition, the text is quite small, but only part of each page of text can be enlarged at any given time; the reader will need to double-click first on the top portion of a longer paragraph, then again to close that portion, and yet again to enlarge the lower lines.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about George's adventures in books and on television. Which do you like better, the books or the PBS TV show?

  • Have you ever visited a fire station? What did you see there?

  • Try juggling balls like George does.

Book details

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