Alfred Digs

Overview

What would you do if your pet ant escaped from her ant farm? Would you follow her? Even if you had promised your mama to eat your pie, and drink your milk, and stay in your cozy burrow?

Scritch.

Scratch.

Scritch.

Alfred digs. And digs. And digs. Where is Itty Bitty? And what will happen when Alfred ?nds ...

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Overview

What would you do if your pet ant escaped from her ant farm? Would you follow her? Even if you had promised your mama to eat your pie, and drink your milk, and stay in your cozy burrow?

Scritch.

Scratch.

Scritch.

Alfred digs. And digs. And digs. Where is Itty Bitty? And what will happen when Alfred ?nds her?

In this tour de force of a picture book, Lindsay Barrett George introduces an aardvark (or two), an ant (a troublemaker, really), and an adventure that takes place in a dictionary. Where? A dictionary.

Read on!

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Sylvia Firth
Once again this well known author/ illustrator has come through with another winner. Alfred is a young aardvark whose beloved pet is an ant named Itty Bitty. Alfred and his mother live in the dictionary on the "A" page. Like all aardvarks, Alfred loves to dig. When Itty Bitty escapes from her ant farm and heads for a visit to the zoo, Alfred follows by digging through the dictionary all the way to the letter "W." Here he uses his long and sticky tongue to rescue Itty Bitty from a very hungry woodpecker. Suddenly they hear a noise that gets louder and more frantic until Mama appears and confronts the woodpecker. Since Itty Bitty still wants to go to the zoo, they dig down until they reach the zoo and have a wonderful visit. When it is time to return home, Mr. Zebra gladly flies them out of the dictionary in his beautifully colored blimp back to their home on page "A." Everyone is exhausted and soon all are in the land of zzzz. The ink-and-watercolor illustrations are vivid and perfectly match the text while giving the story added depth. Children are sure to delight in hearing or reading this charming and clever tale. Purchase is recommended. Reviewer: Sylvia Firth
School Library Journal

K-Gr 1- A book that is stronger in concept than in execution. The endpapers let readers know from the outset that the action in this book takes place inside a dictionary. The first page boasts a definition of an aardvark, thus introducing the main character. Alfred is an aardvark but he does not eat ants. In fact, his pet is an ant that he calls Itty Bitty. While Mama is away, he and Itty Bitty dig down through the dictionary to visit the zoo. Along the way, they encounter a woodpecker that threatens to eat Itty Bitty. Mama comes along at just the right moment and saves the day. Back they go to their aardvark tunnel in time for bed. It's not an alphabet book per se and it is not a credible adventure, and thus the story falls flat. Children who know the alphabet will recognize that the bird that appears is a woodpecker because of where the characters are in the dictionary. Other youngsters will have to wait for the page turn to find it identified. The same is true of the ending, when they board a zeppelin with Mr. Zebra to head back home. While they make it home safe and sound, the ending leaves readers wanting more. A remarkable illustrator, George's work here is a disappointment as well.-Joan Kindig, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA

Kirkus Reviews
Alfred's not the most obedient of aardvarks, but he may be the cutest. When his pet ant Itty Bitty goes missing, Alfred casts off his mother's request to stay put while she's away on an errand. He leaves his cozy burrow at (of course) the very beginning of the dictionary to dig through the other letters in pursuit. Even younger children will have no trouble accepting the unusual shape of Alfred's universe, nor in following his meandering track as, in George's clean-lined cartoons, he goes all the way from "B" to "W" before catching up with his errant ant. A spread-filling Woodpecker provides a moment of fright, but then Mama drops in to the rescue amid a shower of loose letters, faces the beautifully rendered bird down, calmly conducts her contrite younglings to the Zoo-and then conducts them back to "A" aboard Zebra's Zeppelin. Strewn but not crowded with letters, and animals or objects to match, this pleasant excursion through the ABCs is just the ticket for audiences ready to emerge from pre-literacy. (Picture book. 3-5)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060787608
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/8/2008
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 1,339,824
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 11.50 (h) x 0.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Lindsay Barrett George is widely recognized for her striking illustrations of animals, birds, and fish in their habitats. She is the author-illustrator of Maggie’s Ball; Alfred Digs; The Secret; Inside Mouse, Outside Mouse; In the Garden: Who’s Been Here?; and four other Who’s Been Here? titles.

Lindsay Barrett George lives in northeastern Pennsylvania with her dog, two cats, and a very handsome duck.

Lindsay Barrett George is widely recognized for her striking illustrations of animals, birds, and fish in their habitats. She is the author-illustrator of Maggie’s Ball; Alfred Digs; The Secret; Inside Mouse, Outside Mouse; In the Garden: Who’s Been Here?; and four other Who’s Been Here? titles.

Lindsay Barrett George lives in northeastern Pennsylvania with her dog, two cats, and a very handsome duck.

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