Alphabetter

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Overview

Did you ever try to use an egg in place of a football? Or dress up a live quail in doll's clothes when you didn't have a doll? Or strap rag-dolls onto your feet in place of slippers? In Alphabetter, twenty-six boys and girls find themselves in twenty-six different predicaments when the alphabet refuses to cooperate with them. In the end, the solution turns out to be right on the next page, if only they can find it

Did you find all the letters hidden in the pictures in ...

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2006-09-01 Hardcover Very Good Sewn binding. Paper over boards. With dust jacket. 32 p. Contains: Illustrations.

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Overview

Did you ever try to use an egg in place of a football? Or dress up a live quail in doll's clothes when you didn't have a doll? Or strap rag-dolls onto your feet in place of slippers? In Alphabetter, twenty-six boys and girls find themselves in twenty-six different predicaments when the alphabet refuses to cooperate with them. In the end, the solution turns out to be right on the next page, if only they can find it

Did you find all the letters hidden in the pictures in Alphabetter? Some of them are very hard to find! These are the ones that we know about. Maybe you found others as well. Happy searching!

Click here to see a list of letters hidden in the book.

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Editorial Reviews

Canadian Book Review Annual
"This creative collaboration is highly recommended."
The Globe and Mail
"...it is cleverness writ and painted large, and it's delivered with an infectious exuberance and cadence that manifests itself not just in the playful text, but also in illustrator Ross's quirky, kinetic characters."
Book Notes
"...appropriate for early elementary students who enjoy funny stories and look-and-find books..."
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz
Bar-el and Ross meet the challenge of producing a different kind of alphabet book by presenting on each page a youngster whose name begins with a letter of the alphabet. He or she has something beginning with that letter but is missing something beginning with the next letter. So Alberto has an alligator, but no bathing suit. Benoit has a bathing suit but no clarinet, and so it goes. By the time we reach Zara, she really just wants a friend. This leads to a double page on which each character, from Zara back up the alphabet, gives the next person their desired item. Everyone ends up satisfied, except perhaps the alligator, who is off to the zoo. Ross picks up on the amusing possibilities by inventing a cast of comic characters and having them perform in odd ways: Hector gets his hammer from an ice cream vendor; Gwendolyn's goldfish hangs from her belt, along with an assortment of construction tools; Frieda feeds her football in its fishbowl, etc. Acrylic paints produce solid figures and props, while bits of collage spotlight some objects for contrast. The final display adds visual delights as its very small characters attend to their desires. There is even a letter hidden on each page and a web site where you can check your find and for "more alphabet fun."
Children's Literature - Jean Boreen
This book takes a unique look at the alphabet and the only way to explain it is with an example. "Alberto had an alligator, but he didn't have a bathing suit. Benoit had a bathing suit, but he didn't have a clarinet. And so on. The details in this book don't tend to easily go together, creating a tension that leads to a lot of humor. The illustrations, in primary colors with humorous details—a football player with egg yolk on his helmet, a goldfish hanging off a utility belt, clouds that look like birds—totally support the fun tone of the book. After Z, each character in the book realizes that if he or she gives his or her object to the person previously, all of them will be happy. I certainly wish this book had been around when my kids were younger, and I look forward to giving this book to parents of young children. What better recommendation can I give?
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1-An entertaining alphabet book with a twist. Twenty-six children are ready to take part in an activity but cannot because each one is missing a crucial item. However, the youngster on the next page has it. For example, "Alberto had an alligator, but he didn't have a bathing suit. Beno"t had a bathing suit, but he didn't have a clarinet." Guess what Cara has. The humorous acrylic-and-collage pictures are bold, and the bright, crisp colors show up well against white backgrounds. Alberto's alligator wears swim goggles and jumps off a diving board, while the poor boy standing on the raft is dressed only in a barrel. The capital form of the letter is featured in the upper left corner; there is also another letter hidden somewhere on the page, which makes this title a seek-and-find as well as a concept book. The ending unites the children and the item they each need plus a bonus: friends. For another alphabet book in which children are connected through the letters, see Anita Lobel's Alison's Zinnia (HarperCollins, 1990). A fun way to learn the alphabet.-Maryann H. Owen, Racine Public Library, WI Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
The Globe and Mail
"It is cleverness writ and painted large, and it's delivered with an infectious exuberance and cadence that manifests itself not just in the playful text, but also in illustrator Ross's quirky, kinetic characters."
Book Notes
"Appropriate for early elementary students who enjoy funny stories and look-and-find books."
BC Parent Magazine
"An original alphabet book that is filled with fun preschool humour. Ross's illustrations capture the whimsical fun nature of the book and will have youngsters laughing out loud."
CM Magazine
"Indeed one of the better alphabet books. Highly recommended."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781551434391
  • Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/1/2006
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.50 (w) x 10.50 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Look! Look what I've done!! The words of an eight year old as he holds up the drawing of a vibrant red fire engine. Oh Graham, that's wonderful.

Really? Oh this is good. You draw a picture and you get a reaction. I could get into this! And so it began. The seed was planted, further watered by bedtime rituals of propping pillows up against his bedroom wall getting into bed to get lost in a family member's reading of The Wind in the Willows.

An unintended lesson learned through those readings that our intrepid illustrator still calls upon in his illustration work is that the viewer will take different things from the illustration and he will add elements to the illustration that may go over some heads, but others will catch them and smile. There's always something to look at.

A graduate of the illustration program at Sheridan College in Ontario, Graham thought he would stick around the big smoke and in addition to his work as a designer at Canadian publisher McClelland & Stewart, he would also cultivate his Flock of Seagulls hair style and work on his dance floor moves. But alas soon follicles started to recede and shoulder pads deflated, so Graham moved back to his hometown of Ottawa, Ontario to contemplate his next career move.

It was in Ottawa that Graham began his freelance illustration and graphic design career. A career that has spawned illustrations for such publishers as Orca Book Publishers, Scholastic Canada, and Meadowside Books of the United Kingdom, as well as numerous Canadian government agencies and private design firms.

He lives in Merrickville, Ontario with a circus star family: his juggling wife, a helldriver daughter, a canine cannonball, and a fire breathing cat.

Dan Bar-el was born in Edmonton, grew up in Ontario, got lost briefly in Manitoba and now resides in Vancouver. He has many years experience working with school age children and currently facilitates a unique storytelling program that he brings to preschools and daycares. Each year, Dan gives numerous presentations in schools and libraries across North America both as an author and as a storyteller. He takes great delight in opportunities to travel, see new places and visit with young readers. Dan teaches writing workshops to children too. In the past, Dan trained and worked professionally as an actor, has written for theatre, as well as written and performed comedy across Canada. Visit his website at www.danbar-el.com.

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Read an Excerpt

Alberto had an alligator, but he didn't have a bathing suit.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 26, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Jennifer Wardrip, aka "The Genius" for Kids @ TeensReadToo.com

    Twenty-six boys and girls, from Alberto to Zara, have a problem. They each have something someone else wants, and they each need something they don't have. That darn alphabet just isn't cooperating! <BR/><BR/>Dinah has a doggy bone, but what she really needs is an egg. Louise has a letter, but she really wants a marshmallow. And poor Vladimir has a vase, but he really, really needs a water ski! <BR/><BR/>Each of them can get what they want, but only if they cooperate and switch the alphabet around! The answer to all of their problems is on the last page, if only they know how to get to the solution. <BR/><BR/>This is a fun book, and has the added bonus of containing a hidden letter on each page. And believe me, some of these letters are REALLY well hidden! Kids and parents will have to work together--like the children in the story--to find all the hidden letters.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2007

    A reviewer

    Twenty-six boys and girls, from Alberto to Zara, have a problem. They each have something someone else wants, and they each need something they don't have. That darn alphabet just isn't cooperating! Dinah has a doggy bone, but what she really needs is an egg. Louise has a letter, but she really wants a marshmallow. And poor Vladimir has a vase, but he really, really needs a water ski! Each of them can get what they want, but only if they cooperate and switch the alphabet around! The answer to all of their problems is on the last page, if only they know how to get to the solution. This is a fun book, and has the added bonus of containing a hidden letter on each page. And believe me, some of these letters are REALLY well hidden! Kids and parents will have to work together--like the children in the story--to find all the hidden letters. **Reviewed by: Jennifer Wardrip, aka 'The Genius'

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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