A Mountain Alphabet

Overview

Mountains are an impressive sight anywhere in the world but those of the western mountain region of North America offer riches that are truly unique. This lavishly illustrated picture book presents snowcapped peaks, emerald lakes, tall pines and magnificent maples, and a range of birds and animals that will fill readers of all ages with wonder.

The treasures and mysteries of nature are depicted in twenty-six full-color paintings, each with a ...
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Overview

Mountains are an impressive sight anywhere in the world but those of the western mountain region of North America offer riches that are truly unique. This lavishly illustrated picture book presents snowcapped peaks, emerald lakes, tall pines and magnificent maples, and a range of birds and animals that will fill readers of all ages with wonder.

The treasures and mysteries of nature are depicted in twenty-six full-color paintings, each with a line of alliterative text. Objects that begin with that letter of the alphabet are waiting to be discovered in each illustration. Complete with detailed information about each setting painted, this is a visually and mentally stimulating experience – from A to Z.
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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Judy Katsh
Examining a subject through a restrictive lens provides an altered, sometimes even clearer view. That's the goal of this lushly illustrated alphabet book by a naturalist and wildlife artist team. By looking at the mountain environment through the lens provided by the letters of the alphabet, the authors present a unique and close-up look at the many faces, animal inhabitants, and moods of the mountains. Each letter is accompanied by a picture and short caption with a longer explanation of what's going on in the picture included at the back of the book. It's an interesting field trip-and not a bad way to review the alphabet either.
School Library Journal
Gr 2-5Various aspects of mountain ecosystems in the western U.S., from "Avalanche" to "Mountain goats zip up the zigzagging trail" are explored in this alphabetically arranged book. Each page features a detailed painting along with a simple, somewhat alliterative text. Wildlife and plants are particularly well rendered in the pictures; each one features texture and line that give a sense of the stark beauty of the area. Value is used throughout to highlight the sunlight and shadows created by clouds, mountain shade, moving water, and shifting daylight. An author's foreword sets an appropriate tone for a "hike" through these ranges and an informational alphabet at the end describes the scenes in more detail. Along with Jean Craighead George's One Day in the Alpine Tundra (Crowell, 1984), Diane Siebert's Sierra (HarperCollins, 1991), and Ron Hirschi's One Day on Pika's Peak (Dodd, 1986; o.p.), this book will help young readers to explore this ecosystem. However, it can cause some confusion. For example, in the picture for the letter "d," along with the deer, daisies, and dandelions mentioned in the text, there are ducks, not mentioned, and also a spider web, some fungi on a fallen log, and a bear. In the list of alphabetized items at the end of the book, children learn that they were to have figured out "design" for the spider web, "dead fall" and "decomposing material" for the fungus on the log, and "digging bear," all of which stretch beyond the comprehension of most young ecologists. While this title provides a valuable resource, it will need adult intervention to help youngsters "read" the pictures so that they can get the most out of it.Barbara Chatton, College of Education, University of Wyoming, Laramie
From the Publisher
“Kiss is an established wildlife artist. His landscapes and animals are attractive and accurate…Kiss adds many features to his paintings that expand the usefulness, perhaps even the play value of the book.”
Book Review Digest

“…[a] lavishly illustrated alphabet book…Wildlife artist Andrew Kiss offers 26 spectacular mountain perspectives. A real WOW!”
Emergency Librarian

“The illustrations are magnificent and contain a wealth of information without being cluttered.”
Canadian Children’s Literature

“Bold, rich colours and perspectives and lyrical language combine to create an exquisite experience… Andrew Kiss draws viewers inside the scene and transports them.”
Resource Links

“The quality of the paintings and text could each stand alone…The love of wildlife and the outdoors is obvious in both the paintings and the text.”
CM Magazine

“Kiss’s full-page paintings of mountain scenery are visually stunning.”
Winnipeg Free Press

“Andrew Kiss’s paintings perfectly capture the majesty of the mountains.”
Owen Sound Sunday Times

“A delightful, beautiful book…”
Christian Library Journal

From the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780887763847
  • Publisher: Tundra
  • Publication date: 9/28/1996
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 6 - 9 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.13 (d)

Meet the Author

Margriet Ruurs has been writing stories and poetry since she was seven. She and her husband have hiked, camped, and lived in mountains from California to the Yukon. They now make their home with their two sons at the foot of Silver Star Mountain in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley.

Andrew Kiss is one of Canada’s finest wildlife artists. His reverence for nature has brought him international acclaim. He lives in the southern interior of British Columbia near the rugged mountains and lakes of the Cariboo region with his wife and two children. He spends his time doing what he loves – painting the nature around him.

From the Hardcover edition.

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