The Alphazeds

Overview

Milton Glaser, the founder of New York magazine, and the creator of the globally recognized I NY logo, is beloved by art aficionados and design enthusiasts the world over. In this beautifully designed, enchanting book for children of all ages, Milton and Shirley Glaser team up to reintroduce readers to the alphabet. The Alphazeds begins with an empty room, which begins filling up with some extraordinary-looking letters. As each letter appears on the scene, it boldly announces its personality: A is angry all the ...
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2003-09-01 Hardcover New New! 1st printing. Oversized hardback book in a FINE dust jacket. #496. FAST shipping, FREE delivery confirmation and online tracking. Thank you!

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2003-09-01 Hardcover New Oversized hardback book, dust jacket protected in mylar. 1st printing! #394. FAST shipping, FREE delivery confirmation and online tracking. Thank you!

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Overview

Milton Glaser, the founder of New York magazine, and the creator of the globally recognized I NY logo, is beloved by art aficionados and design enthusiasts the world over. In this beautifully designed, enchanting book for children of all ages, Milton and Shirley Glaser team up to reintroduce readers to the alphabet. The Alphazeds begins with an empty room, which begins filling up with some extraordinary-looking letters. As each letter appears on the scene, it boldly announces its personality: A is angry all the time; B couldn't be more bashful; and K comes in kicking everyone else out of the way. Will the rambunctious letters ever be able to coexist long enough to work together? Charming and utterly original, The Alphazeds cleverly teaches the alphabet and new words to children, while also introducing them to the art of typography in a fresh and enjoyable way.

A room stands empty, until it begins to fill with some very unusual looking letters. As each letter enters, it boldly announces its personality. This stunning book introduces children to the art of typography.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this alphabetical origin story, 26 personality types (i.e., typefaces) gather in an unfurnished room. First to arrive are Angry A, with knobby spikes on its cactus-like body, and Bashful B, a slender and shy blue Bodoni character. "What are you doing here?" demands A. "Excuse me" appears above B in a quiet thought bubble. Next to come are Confused C and Dynamic D, a dark-red extrovert who yells "Ta-da!" regardless of what the others say. Elegant E enters as a fancy black script letter ("I dare say, it's getting a bit crowded"), and Flamboyant F, a voluptuous tapestry shape, sniffs, "I seem to be the only one here who knows how to dress." The Glasers, a married pair, invent outlandish partygoers like Kicking K, which lashes out at the other guests with its lower extension, and an R that speaks in silly rhymes. Designer Milton Glaser has created many distinctive, streamlined graphics, such as the "I Love NY" logo, but he allows for clutter and some visual clumsiness here. A Babel of hand-printed chatter fills the sharp-cornered spread, which recalls a minimalist stage set, and the bustling space resembles the Marx Brothers' shipboard closet. In a mock-biblical ending, the letters W, O, R and Dynamic D (still saying "Ta-da!") suddenly get together: "In the beginning there was the word." Readers tired of the same old Courier and Helvetica can look for a T pictured in Torino, V in Venus and Z in Zapf. Production insiders will applaud the Glasers' unique performance. All ages. (Sept.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Whether you pronounce it "alpha-zed" or "al-phazed," this book will have you laughing as you appreciate the many layers of this alphabet pile-up of a story. In the time before anything begins, a very fat, pink and green, thorny Angry A enters a room. A Bashful B follows, excusing himself, while A states in a hand-lettered cartoon balloon, "What are you doing here?" Soon, a Confused C, a stolid and red blocky Dynamic D (who always utters "Ta-Da!"), a swirly Elegant E, and a paisleyed Flamboyant F have joined the group with other letters following. As the room fills with letters, each one in character adds his two cents, so that the room also fills with variously shaped, hand-lettered conversation balloons that overlap excitedly and fill the page. Off at the edge, a blue Bashful B opines about relationships between the letters, asks why we are here, and who these strange characters are? Finally, when the whole crowd of 26 letters is assembled, the light goes out, darkness fills the room, and a voice says: "Let there be light." Light returns, and there in the middle of the visual alphabetic mess, stand W, O, R and D, playing their important part. "In the beginning there was the WORD" states the text, sonorously. What makes this so much fun, is that each letter is based on real typography: B is Boldoni, J is Jim Crow, O is Ornate Wood, and so forth. It makes readers want to examine other books to see if they can identify the type face as a helpful key is appended. A short "Who's Who in the Cast" continues the humor with references to Broadway and Hollywood, the current scene, and puns: "Bashful B was last seen in Tub, where he played the double role of the baby." The older reader willappreciate the total package that Glaser (who designed the "I Love New York" heart logo) and his wife have created. 2003, Miramax/Hyperion, Ages 5 to 9.
— Susan Hepler, Ph.D.
Library Journal
K-Gr 3-One by one, the letters of the alphabet enter a "big empty yellow room." From "Angry A" to "Zigzag Z," each one is described by an alliterative adjective. Eventually, the space is stuffed with a haphazard horde of loudmouthed letters, and dialogue balloons show their obnoxious comments. Finally, "The noise was terrible. Everyone was screaming at the top of their lungs. Nobody cared about anyone else. They were pushing and shoving and hitting and kicking. It was a disaster." (The grammar here is a definite disaster.) Then the lone light bulb goes out and a vague voice says, "Let there be light." By the time it is restored, four letters have joined together, and the pretentious text reads, "In the beginning there was the WORD." After this faux finale, Glaser offers a cloying cast list with exasperating entries such as "Yelling Y was last year's youngest Grammy winner for his yodeling version of `Yesterday.' This Yankee from Yonkers is a graduate of Yale." Underneath, another alphabet introduces a variety of typefaces. This befuddling book is more appropriate for graphics-obsessed grown-ups than for children. Bill Martin, Jr.'s Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (S & S, 1989) offers more bang for the buck.-Bina Williams, Bridgeport Public Library, CT Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In a symbolic episode that's more style than substance, the alphabet's contentious letters congregate in a small room until four get together to form the first W-O-R-D, and give the rest the idea that "It wasn't simply about expressing themselves or showing off. They could be a part of something bigger...." Iconic designer Glaser draws each oversized letter from a different family of typefaces, Aurora to Zapf Medium Italic; along with the heavily ladled Lesson, his wife supplies each with a distinct personality, revealed in dialogue balloons and a Playbill-style cast list: "Confused C received a Drama Desk Award for his part in Cactus Circus." Like Roberto de Vicq de Cumptich's Bembo's Zoo (2000), this aims over children's heads, more toward students of design. (Picture book. Adult)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786808656
  • Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
  • Publication date: 9/28/2003
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 12.25 (h) x 0.32 (d)

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