Parents' Guide to

Fireboat: The Heroic Adventures of John J. Harvey

By Patricia Tauzer, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

An old New York fireboat offers heroic help on 9/11.

Fireboat: The Heroic Adventures of John J. Harvey Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 1 parent review

age 10+

Not appropriate for young children

Families can discuss brushstrokes and colors under a theme more suited for kids at this age. Exposing kids at young age to this tragedy can only damage their much needed sense of security. Emotionally and intellectually, they are not mature enough to process it. My star rating is more related to age appropriateness than to how good or bad the book is. I think the story is laudable but deserves a proper audience.

This title has:

Too much violence

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

If parents and their children are ready to hear a bit about the 9/11 attacks, this book is a good way to start. Though the focus is on the fireboat finding a useful purpose, and on the heroism of the people around him, one section discusses the 9/11 attacks. The bright primary colors and bold illustrations turn to a solid black page that sets a somber tone. Next, against the bright blue sky, two tall buildings are approached by two dark planes that "CRASHED, CRASHED, CRASHED into the two strong buildings." During the next few pages the illustrations turn dark and chaotic until order is restored.

The story is plainly told, and full of information about the parts of the boat, things that were restored, and the people who helped. The gracefully expressive artwork, done in gouache, grabs both the eye and the heart, and definitely adds a strong emotional tone to the story.

Book Details

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