Great Illustrated Books

Alphabeasties: And Other Amazing Types

By Sharon Werner, Illustrated by Sarah Forss

Blue Apple Books, 2009
Pages : 56
Suggested Ages: 2 and Up
ISBN: 9781934706787

You've never seen an alphabet book like this before. A is for alligator, but the accompanying picture is composed of hundreds of uppercase and lowercase black A's. Each page contains an animal-bat, camel, dog, elephant- rendered entirely in its initial letters. The giraffe's neck is so tall, the head is gate-folded on the top and the legs accordioned on the bottom to accommodate it. My favorite is the two-page octopus partly covered by two turquoise curvy panels that look like ocean waves. They open up on the bottom and side to reveal four undulating tentacles, all done with O's in the Bodoni Poster font. "Oooooh," viewers will say, appropriately. At the bottom or side of the page are teasers-examples of other typefaces, and little pictures made out of a single letter, like the cat drawn from the side of a capital C, which becomes the cat's back and tail.

Reviewed by :


If you love this book, then try:

Bataille, Marion. ABC3D. Roaring Brook, 2008.

Ehlert, Lois. Color Zoo. HarperCollins, 1989.

Ernst, Lisa Campbell. The Turn-Around Upside-Down Alphabet Book. Simon & Schuster, 2004.

Falwell, Cathryn. The Letter Jesters. Ticknor & Fields, 1994.

Grandits, John. Blue Lipstick: Concrete Poems. Clarion, 2007.

Grandits, John. Technically, It's Not My Fault: Concrete Poems. Clarion, 2004.

Laden, Nina. The Night I Followed the Dog. Chronicle, 1994.

MacDonald, Suse. Alphabatics. Simon & Schuster, 1986.

Pelletier, David. The Graphic Alphabet. Orchard, 1996.

Seeger, Laura Vaccaro. The Hidden Alphabet. Roaring Brook, 2003.

Critics have said

There is a lot to examine here, and readers should return repeatedly to do just that... Young readers will enjoy the animals while older children will have a greater appreciation for the book's artistry.

School Library Journal