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Backhoe Joe

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  154 ratings  ·  29 reviews
Nolan's always wanted his own backhoe! So when he finds a stray backhoe in the street, he can't wait to adopt it. But this backhoe is not very well behaved. As Nolan tries to train his new pet, he learns that maybe this backhoe already has a home.

This delightful story of a boy and his construction vehicle is brought to life with Craig Cameron's vibrant illustrations, makin
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published September 16th 2014 by HarperCollins
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Average rating 3.80  · 
Rating details
 ·  154 ratings  ·  29 reviews

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Margaret Chind
Genre: Juvenile Fiction / Transportation / General
Ages 4 to 8, Grades P to 3
Pages: 40 Jacketed Hardcover 10x10"
Date Published:
Publisher: Harper

This is cute! I am only just starting to look into and understand the thrill of transportation themes for little boys. (Yet my girls do live Thomas and enjoy Bob the Builder from time to time...) With a new son I'm on the look out for some more diggers and such, because while we already like them books like Backhoe Joe can help us love them!

Craig Cameron
Jan 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Backhoe Joe is a brilliant mash-up of a construction vehicle and pet story. These are the very 2 topics that young kids love to read about. Original and clever by debut author, Lori Alexander. I love the idea of finding a stray backhoe vehicle and keeping it as a pet. The story touches upon authentic emotions and responsibilities associated with a pet that kids can relate to. Full of fun and humor with a great twist in the end. Backhoe Joe will tickle the imagination of young readers.
This is a fun and unique story about a boy and a "pet" backhoe who follows him home one day. Although it is not a typical kind of pet, this book teaches the responsibility required to own a pet of any kind and how much time and energy it requires. A good read, especially for children who like big construction vehicles.
Oct 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a fantastic book for truck lovers. My kids (girl and boy) love this book. My daughter loves pets and got a kick out of the lost dog story, and my son is crazy for construction vehicles. My son (4) slept with the book for the first three nights that we read it. This book is one of the best construction books we’ve read in years.
Rachel K
Oct 25, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: cars-trains-etc
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nolan finds a stray backhoe, names him Joe and takes him home. His parents are hesitant to let Nolan keep the backhoe because it isn't trained. Nolan begins to train him and eventually finds a great place for Joe to dig. But on the way home Nolan notices a sign for a lost backhoe.

Nolan does the right thing and returns Joe to his rightful owner. His parents decide that his good decisions show that he is ready for a pet of his own. Nolan agrees. Although he wants something a bit less active; somet
Mar 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
The timeless tail of a boy who finds a stray backhoe and brings it home. His parents are uncertain, telling him that having a backhoe of their very own is a lot of work, and the boy finds out it's true. After all, backhoes need a lot of space to dig. Eventually, they discover that the backhoe's owner is looking for him and the boy sends him home, but is able to visit, and contemplates getting his own pet.
Miss Sarah
May 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
A cute preschool and up book where a boy adopts a backhoe as his pet and must learn to care for it.
Feb 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
Nolan finds a stray backhoe, and names him Joe, but soon discovers that Joe is lost, and returns him to his rightful owner.
Lynn  Davidson
May 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
This cute story is written as if the backhoe were a stray dog found by a little boy. Funny with great illustrations.
Jennifer Heise
Nov 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebook, trucks
My six year old refused to allow me to read this to him (I think he's outgrowing trucks anyway), so you'll have to settle for my review. I found it charming; anyone who has ever wanted a backhoe of their very own (or any truck-loving dog-wanter) will sympathize with Nolan, who brings home a stray backhoe he finds wandering loose in the road. However, backhoes are hard to keep in the house-- this one digs up flowerbeds, dumps dirt inappropriately, etc. And it becomes obvious that the backhoe, who ...more
Elle Markov
Apr 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
The story was imaginative and creative, it follows little Nolan who learns that having a pet, even if it's a backhoe, is a lot more work than he thought.

So come and have a little fun with Nolan and his new backhoe, Joe.

Rating 4 out of 5
Jun 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids-books
A boy becomes friends with a stray backhoe. A plot only a 2 year old could relate to. The pictures are well drawn and I'm not sick of reading the story. Enough sound words that my son can also read most pages to himself.
Catherine Bailey
Aug 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Not just for boys! I loved it - my kids loved it, and I have two girls. Backhoe Joe is such a cute construction book, deftly explaining the perils of pet ownership in a sweet but silly manner. The ending was a nice little twist too!
Jun 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Love the large type in the text and the colorful pictures by Craig Cameron. Seems like a fun idea for a boy to have a pet backhoe and later an even better big machine. Kindergarteners love this and the boys like it the most.
Nov 30, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: children
Nolan finds a lost backhoe and treats it like a pet. When he sees a notice for a lost backhoe he must decide what to do.
Oct 06, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Nov 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kurt-s-books
This little boy is pretty funny to try to have construction vehicles for pets :)
Dec 06, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: construction enthusiasts
A cute story of a boy who finds a lost backhoe and adopts him as a pet.
Sep 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-book
A story about a boy and his pet backhoe, Joe. Yep, a boy with a pet truck that behaves like a naughty dog.
Edward Sullivan
Oct 18, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-books
A boy and his backhoe. Good for construction equipment enthusiasts.
Elizabeth S
May 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
What could be cuter than a boy with a backhoe for a pet? The question is, of course, rhetorical, since nothing could possibly be cuter. :)
Dec 31, 2014 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids
This book has a surprise ending.
Backhoe Joe the story of a little boy getting a new pet, a backhoe,
and all the great things the backhoe can do.

my child loves construction so this book was well received.

Oct 15, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
A cute twist on a "stray pet" story with an ending you may not see coming.
Feb 13, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: from-library
Cute but maybe a bit too cutesy for me. H likes it though so I'm sure we'll read it about 3 million times before it's due at the library.
Lisa Furness
rated it really liked it
Dec 27, 2019
rated it it was amazing
Aug 07, 2019
Jamie Bernard
rated it liked it
Nov 23, 2015
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Lori Alexander loves to read and write! She has written picture books like BACKHOE JOE (Harper, 2014) and FAMOUSLY PHOEBE (Sterling, 2017) as well as the FUTURE BABY board book series (Scholastic, 2019). She also writes non-fiction chapter books, such as ALL IN A DROP (2019) and A SPORTING CHANCE (2020), both from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Lori resides in sunny Tucson, Arizona, with her scientist

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