Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Read, Read, Read said the Baby: Alphaprints: ABC by Sarah Powell and Jo Ryan

[Digging through the archives...]

This is a super-cute ABC book with a twist. All the letters are represented by animals and each animal is a thumbprint. There's half of a rhyming couplet for each picture "M is for Monkey, Very silly and fun./N is for Newt, The quiet, sneaky one."

The text is simple and could be skipped or adapted, depending on the age of the child. The pictures are, as they should be in a board book, the best part. The finger prints are combined with collage and bits of art to create fun animals with lots of different parts to point out and identify. For example, "J is for Jellyfish" shows a large blue finger print with two black dots for eyes and a black squiggle drawn as a mouth, little blue...fins? sticking out the side, and what looks like sour gummy worms for tentacles. "I is for Iguana" has an iguana whose body is a fingerprint, legs from twisty straws, and spines are the pointy tops of crayons. The pictures are on stark white backgrounds. The letter text (H is for etc.) match the general color of the animal, while the text below the picture is black, in a smaller font.

The book is on the large side, 8x9, with a cute little string of animals along the spine. It's about an inch thick and the spine feels a little wobbly to me, but that's generally true of these bigger board books with actual covers. The fingerprints are all slightly raised, so you can feel the lines as small bumps.

Verdict: Another winner! The simple text is easily adaptable for a range of ages, the brightly colored illustrations are equally workable with a variety of audiences. The textured art, different shapes and items in the collage art, bold print, and recognizable animals make this a board book that will work with pretty much every audience from the youngest baby to toddlers getting ready to transition to picture books.

Revisited: I purchased this and other Alphaprints for our board book collection and they are quite popular. They did eventually disintegrate, but held together longer than I had expected. I still strongly recommend this series.

ISBN: 9780312516468; Published 2013 by Priddy Books/St. Martin's Press; Borrowed from another library in my consortium; Purchased for the library


Resh said...

Although my 6 yo is an independent reader, I know that she will love this one. Especially for the art! Its simple to draw and create her own art with the ideas used for the animals. Thanks for sharing!
-Reshama @ Stackingbooks

Jennifer said...

Have you ever seen Ed Emberley's fingerprint art books? They're sort of how to draw books but they're all fingerprints, like the art here!