CITY ALPHABET by Joanne Schwartz

CITY ALPHABET

by and photographed by
Age Range: 10 & up
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Almost an artist’s book rather than a book for children, this artfully constructed alphabet book holds its strength in design rather than beauty, although a few of the images are incidentally beautiful. For each opening, the verso holds a capital and lower-case letter, a single word beginning with that letter and a phrase describing the medium of the image in the photograph opposite, in which the word appears: “Ll / Love / Carved in wood. Tree-trunk monument.” The letters themselves are dropped out, filled in with a piece of their photograph: The letters Qq are printed in the pattern of the vinyl flooring of the decal shadows that make the word “queen.” Beam took these photographs of words in the city of Toronto; the text was written by author and children’s librarian Schwartz. The words, as one might imagine, tend to the random—“brute,” “evoke,” “um.” Fascinating, but probably more for young adults than for children. It will certainly have readers seeing their own cities with new eyes. (Picture book. 10 & up)

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-88899-928-3
Page count: 60pp
Publisher: Groundwood
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2009




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