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Looking for new book ideas perfect for a fire truck loving kid? Check out these children’s books about fire trucks, firefighting and firefighters that kids will be stoked about (pun intended!).
Like any good toddler, our kid is singular in his focus. The boy loves a vehicle. And top of the list are trucks of all kinds. We often go out on walks just to hunt fire trucks. The first song he learned to sing was a fire truck reboot of “Wheels on the Bus.”
And we spend a lot of time reading different truck books, so I now consider myself a toddler fire truck book connoisseur. And I’ve put together a list of fire truck and firefighting books that we have regularly read to save you time.
Below you’ll find our list of fire truck children’s books that have all been toddler-vetted, with my honest take on how enjoyable it is to read aloud for the parents.
I found all but one of these books at our local library. I hope you’ll be able to find them at a library too, but I also include links because I also know all too well the stress of having easily-torn library books around toddlers (I’m basically taping books back together on a weekly basis…).
And if you’re looking for more book ideas for a truck-loving kid, don’t forget to check out:
Let’s fire away!
1. Fire Truck
by Peter Sis
Fire Truck is about a little boy named Matt who loves fire trucks. One night, Matt turns into a fire truck and he goes around doing fire truck things like blaring his siren and saving a cat.
The book ends with Matt smelling pancakes and becoming a boy again to eat breakfast. The book also includes counting practice where it lists off the numbers 1-10 with items on Matt the Fire Truck.
Our toddler loved this fire truck book so much. He thought it was so funny when the little boy became a fire truck, and he laughed again when it turns out that he smells pancakes at the end. He also loved inspecting all the little fire truck toys throughout the illustrations.
This is a simple book but really hit the right mark with the toddler demographic. I enjoyed reading it too because it was different from a lot of other fire truck books, which honestly kind of blend together with similar plots.
2. Firefighter Ted
by Andrea Beaty
Firefighter Ted follows a little bear named Ted as he tries to help around the town as a “firefighter.” However, every time Ted helps, he actually causes trouble but does not realize it. Firefighter Ted is part of a series that includes books like Doctor Ted and Artist Ted.
I think slightly older kids will find this book very funny and enjoy Ted’s hijinks. The pictures are cute and I appreciate a children’s book with humor. However, the jokes seemed to be a little above our 2-year old’s head and I had to explain the punch lines to him often.
3. The Firefighters
by Sue Whiting
The Firefighters follows a classroom of students pretending to be firefighters with their teacher. It is written in first person but it does not identify which child is the protagonist. This is a nice touch so the reader can identify with either a little boy or girl as the protagonist.
The book ends with a visit from real firefighters who teach the kids about fire safety — a nice gentle introduction to discussing fire safety with your kids. It shows the students practicing crawling out during a fire, which could be a fun activity to emulate and practice.
4. Wheels on a Fire Truck Book
by Jeffrey Burton and Alison Brown
Listen, I know Wheels on a Fire Truck seems too obvious but our toddler goes nuts for this book. It is simply a reworking of the Wheels on the Bus but with things on a fire truck. The book depicts animal firefighters doing different duties with each refrain of the song. Of course, at the end they put out a fire and save the day.
This is an easy book and got our kid to sing along to something for the first time so I have a real soft spot for this one. It won’t win any literary awards but my guess is your toddler will be delighted by it too.
5. This is the Firefighter
by Laura Godwin
This is the Firefighter follows a fireman as he gets called for a fire. The text is formatted so every sentence is grammatically the same, such as “this is a firefighter, these are his clothes; this is his truck, this is its hose.” The book ends by highlighting how firefighters are heroes.
I found this format a little bland but the rhyming scheme made it easy to read aloud. The simple text also seemed easy to follow for my young kid.
6. Five Little Firefighters
by Tom Graham
Five Little Firefighter is a blend of a children’s book and a comic book. It follows five firefighters as they respond to a fire and save a kitten. There is simple text explaining the action but a lot of the story is progressed by short thought bubbles.
I like this comic-style as a change up from usual children’s book format, and I appreciated that this book included a woman in the firefighter team. My toddler loved saying the ‘wee-oooh’ and ‘honk’ parts along with this book.
7. My Mom is a Firefighter Book
by Lois Grambling
My Mom is a Firefighter is told by a little boy named Billy about his mom’s work. She is a firefighter and Billy explains all the fun things he gets to do at the firehouse and the work his mom does when she fights fires.
The book also weaves in a section about fire safety when Billy’s mom does a fire presentation at his school. It goes over safety measures like stop, drop and roll, which personally was a good reminder for me to discuss with our toddler.
I really appreciated a book that shows a woman as a firefighter since nearly all the other books about fire trucks and firefighters featured boys as the leads. That said, I’d love to see a fire truck focused book where the little kid protagonist was a girl.
8. Little Fire Engine
by Lois Lenski
The Little Fire Engine follows a fireman named Mr. Small and the steps he takes to respond to a fire. This book is part of a series about Mr. Small where he does different jobs, like being a farmer or a train conductor.
This book goes into more small details about the steps firefighters take than some of the other books listed here. This attention to detail makes the text a little longer than some other books and may not make it the best fit for toddlers with short attention spans.
That said, the best part of this book is the page where the parts of a fire truck are labeled. Many fire truck books do this but this was by far the most detailed, highlighting new parts we hadn’t seen in other books’ diagrams.
Overall, many of the stories about fire trucks and firefighters were very similar and Little Fire Engine was no exception. It was a fine book and a little fire truck lover will like it, but it did not stand out in the crowd.
9. Firefighter Duckies Book
by Frank Dormer
Firefighter Duckies follows a group of ducks as they help animals. The punch line of the book is they help nonsensical things like whales in trees and dinosaurs on bicycles.
Our toddler was a little young to appreciate the absurdity of the book but I think it will really delight slightly older kids. The illustrations are cheeky and fun, with thought bubbles throughout.
I liked how the book repeats the same refrain about the ducks being brave and strong, while juxtaposing this predictability with the surprise of weird animal needing rescue. Predictable refrains are also a recommended feature for toddler books (source).
10. Machines with Power! Fire Truck Book
by Amy McDonald
Fire Trucks is an early reader’s book with simple and repetitive words. The pages feature big text and big, real pictures of fire trucks. Our toddler loved the pages that went over different parts of the fire truck that he could point out.
While this book is meant for early readers, it also felt appropriate to read to toddlers. The big, simple text and big photographs really appealed to our toddler and the book read like a board book for the toddler age group.
11. Molly, by Golly
Molly, by Golly tells the story of Molly Williams who is the first known female and black firefighter. The book presents her as the cook of the fire house and tells the story of how she volunteered to fight a fire when the other firefighters were sick with influenza.
I am torn on how to feel about this book. On one hand, it is great to see a book about a black woman firefighter and one that celebrates her history. However, the book does not acknowledge Molly’s enslavement.
In the back of the book, there are frequently asked questions that refer to Molly as one of the firefighter’s servants. That said, the author’s explanations of why she wrote the text and these FAQ’s were a great addition to the historical narrative.
The text of this book is long per page and would be more appropriate for older kids.
12. I’m Brave!
by Kate & Jim McMullan
I’m Brave is a lively story told by a fire truck as he explains his parts and job. It has big, bold text with lots of sound words. The writing is punchy and choppy, with lots of exclamation points and noises for little kids to say.
Honestly, this isn’t my favorite book but, man, does my toddler love it. I find it a little choppy to read aloud and I’m not sure my toddler comprehends the fragments. Still, we read it every night for weeks. He loves to say ‘weee ooooo’ and ‘hooooooonnnkkkk’ along with the book and stays really engaged with the fast tempo of the book.
13. Fire Truck vs. Dragon Book
by Chris Barton
Fire Truck vs. Dragon is a cheeky book about a fire truck and dragon that are good friends. The book rests on the premise that the reader would assume they were rivals since one creates fires and one puts fires out. The pair instead tells the reader about all the things they’re good at together, like bringing food to a bbq potluck and playing birthday party games.
The pictures are fun and the text is presented like a comic book with word bubbles. The book ends with the dragon deploying his fire and the fire truck putting it out to say good night.
Of the books about fire trucks on this list, this is probably the most creative. It was definitely cute and fun, but the joke was lost on our almost three year old. I think it would be a better fit for a slightly older kid, or one more familiar with dragons.
14. Fire Engines
by Anne Rockwell
Fire Engines is a simple book that explains different types of fire vehicles. It compares ladder trucks and pumper fire trucks, and shows less seen fire vehicles like the chief car and firefighting boats.
This book would be best for younger toddlers that really love trucks. On the whole, it is rather generic but it does a good job of putting the fire trucks functions in simple terms.
15. Firefighters! Speeding! Spraying! Saving!
by Patricia Hubbell
Firefighters! Speeding! Spraying! Saving! follows a group of firefighters as they respond to a fire call. The book unfolds as you’d expect: they jump into their truck, race to the fire, and successfully save the day.
The text is simple and carries a rhyming scheme throughout. This makes it an easy, flowing book to read aloud. The rhymes are the highlight of this book, as the rest of it is fairly predictable.
16. A Fire Truck Names Red Book
by Randall De Seve
A Fire Truck Named Red is about a boy named Rowan who wanted a fancy fire truck toy for his birthday. Instead, his grandfather gave him his old toy truck from his childhood. The story follows Rowan learning about his grandfather’s childhood and becoming excited about his new toy.
I like that the story portrays the child’s disappointment at a gift and how he internally tried to maintain composure. It provides a nice example of how disappointing situations can be turned around by staying open-minded.
The illustrations look a little South Park-y and sterile, though I do like how they used sepia pictures to indicate the grandfather’s memories. The color choice gave visual scaffolding for when Rowan joins in his grandfather’s memory stories and helped our toddler process the story line.
17. Fire Engine Man
by Andrea Zimmerman & David Clemesha
Fire Engine Man is a children’s book about a young boy who dreams of becoming a firefighter as he explains all the things he’ll do when he’s a firefighter. Andrea Zimmerman and David Clemesha also wrote a similar book called Digger Man, where the same boy looks forward to his life as a digging truck operator.
Throughout Fire Engine Man, the little boy talks about how he’ll show his little brother about firefighting, making it a great book for kids with younger siblings. My toddler also liked looking at all the little toy trucks and cars featured in the background of some pages.
We’ve used the book as a way to talk to our toddler about being kind to his younger sibling. The book shows a clear example of the older sibling teaching the younger brother so that he grows up to play trucks with him in the future. Our toddler seemed to connect with this book about sibling dynamics more than the more general new baby books we’ve read.