ZOE AND HER ZEBRA by Clare  Beaton


Age Range: 2 - 6
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Beaton’s ingenious felt creations transform the standard alphabet book format into an exotic blend of colors, creatures, and children’s names. Every letter, shown in uppercase and lowercase, appears in a child’s name and is also the beginning of the name of the creature chasing him or her: “Cc is for Carla—but who is chasing her?” A cat is shown, but left for children to name; the refrain is repeated for all 26 letters. Setting the volume apart, in addition to the boldly colored, multi-textured illustrations, is Beaton’s selection of names and animals. Ben and Luke play alongside Farooq, Gopinder, Sita, and Takeshi; next to the usual cat and fox are a quail, a xoona moth, an umbrella bird, and others, all named in the back. The only discord comes in the facial expressions of the children, who are often glum, apprehensive, or dismayed. However, the combination of vivid hues, curious creatures, and repetitive text make for an exhilarating foray into the world of ABCs for preschoolers. (Picture book. 2-6)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1999
ISBN: 1-902283-75-9
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Barefoot
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 1999