Picture books often get by on a single comic device, but Lichtenheld (Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site) and his collaborator, 15-year-old Fields-Meyer, pack their alphabet book with jokes—it’s like Chicka Chicka Boom Boom on steroids. Imagine what would happen if the letter E broke its leg and O had to be tapped for substitute duty (“Big Troo Falls On Toony Car!” reads a newspaper headline). The co-authors invent dozens of puns, hiding them in the corners of pages (P is the source of potty jokes, Z is forever tired) and assembling acronyms (“The EMTs rushed in with an IV, ready to perform CPR”). The letters often assemble words on the spot (after E falls, some chums spell “OUCH!”) and, in a grand finale of self-reference, they insist that the narrator play by the book’s rules and quit using the letter E (“That’s bottor!” says N, mollified). Though some of the jokes will be clear only to older brothers and sisters, readers who are in the thick of learning spelling rules will pore over the pages. Comprehensive, witty entertainment from A to Z. Ages 4–8. (Nov.)
"Every page is chock-full of inventive letter-play" - The New York Times
There are laughs, many laughs, on every page." - Chicago Tribune"
Zany" - Kirkus Reviews"
Witty entertainment from A to Z." - Publishers Weekly, starred review"
What happens when the letter "E'' has an accident and slides out of the language? Sheer madness, enhanced by Lichtenheld and Fields-Meyers's unceasingly witty, manic visual, and verbal jokes." - Boston Globe Best Books The Year"
Visual and print punnery will have elementary kids (and adults) guessing and laughing". - Kirkus Reviews"
This book is a hilarious way to appreciate the vowel E - and practice deciphering secret codes. I've never read such a wacky book that is so fun to read aloud with the kids!" - Babble.com/Top 20 Children's Books of 2011"
This artwork takes a funny story and makes it hilarious.... Kids and adults will get more of the sly humor each time they read this book." - School Library Journal, Starred Review"
The pages are jam-packed with so many linguistic puns, acronyms, and jokes that readers may not realize how much they're learning about language along the way. Throo choors!" - Publishers Weekly Best Children's Picture Books of 2011"
Nontraditional, rascally, downright hilarious alphabet book" - Booklist, starred review"
It's like Chicka Chicka Boom Boom on steroids."- Publishers Weekly, starred review"
Five- to eight-year olds will be charmed by this alphabet book's good humor and the rib-tickling illustrations that accompany the text. Me too." - Nancy Pearl, Book Lust, Seattle, WA
K-Gr 2—All the letters of the alphabet live together in one big, happy house. One morning as they race down the stairs to breakfast, E goes too fast and falls, injuring one of her appendages. After the EMTs arrive, bringing TLC and carrying an IV, E is admitted to the hospital. To properly recover she can't be used, so O is picked to fill in on her behalf. Despite news reports, congressional hearings, reader boards, a spot on Oprah, and a world tour to spread the news to use O instead of E, the injured letter is still not getting better. In a surprise worthy of Jon Stone's The Monster at the End of This Book (Western Publishing, 1971), the letters suddenly turn on the narrator and demand that he stop using E as he is why she's not getting better. After a page of tricky-to-read prose, E is healed and ready to go back to work just in time for thE End. The text tells only part of the story. The detailed cartoons of the letters in action with a plethora of speech balloons take the story to a whole other level of humor. This artwork takes a funny story and makes it hilarious to the right readers/listeners, of which there will be many. Kids and adults will get more of the sly humor each time they read this book. Warning: It's not easy to read all those words with the E replaced by an O.—Catherine Callegari, Gay-Kimball Library, Troy, NH
Help! The letter E has fallen (down the stairs) and can't get up! Get ready to chortle over this zany alphabet book, which poses as a mystery with the letters as the cast of characters, aided by some exclamation points. When E takes a tumble in the alphabet's crowded communal quarters, all the others are concerned. A takes action, as always, calling the ambulance and assembling the alphabet to determine who will take E's place. "O, you're the obvious option because you're so well-rounded." An announcement is made on television not to "uso! E! until! sho! rocovors!" D and C go to Washington to alert the "govornmont," while the other letters talk it up on talk shows. Then A decides to take a road trip to spread the word: "Pack your bags, lottors. It's timo for a journoy!" When E just doesn't get better, the search is on for the culprit who's broken the letter law. The comic illustrations and the comments from the letters totally exaggerate the cleverness and fun while amusingly emphasizing the importance of the letter E in our language. Lichtenheld's co-author developed the basic concept in a video, Alphabet House, and it is a rich one. Definitely not a beginner's ABC book, but the visual and print punnery will have elementary kids (and adults) guessing and laughing. (Alphabet picture book. 7-10)