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by David Pelletier & illustrated by David Pelletier

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-531-36001-6
Publisher: Orchard

This clever, at times challenging, alphabet book is as graphically beautiful as Chris Van Allsburg's The Z Was Zapped (1987). Newcomer Pelletier's presentation is all spareness and subtlety, asking onlookers to determine the letter from the picture, and supplying one-word clues. A spalls off pieces to become an avalanche; I is a submerged rectangle drifting through blue waters under a full moon in a night sky—iceberg; the M has snow-capped peaks, and appears with the word Mountains. A number of the letters are displayed at unusual angles—the P cants to become a pipe; for L, lines in turquoise and white form delicate edges for four squares of black. The choices convey a wonderful sense of the adaptability of letters, and, by association, of words. The letters will inspire dialogue when shared, e.g., Why is the I submerged so deep? Equally cunning are letters like R, a jagged rip of fiery red, or the crossed fingers on an X-ray image. They take a little time to decipher; for those already accomplished at ABC basics, the extra work will be worth every minute. (Picture book. 3+)