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BASHER: ABC KIDS by Simon Basher


by Simon Basher & illustrated by Simon Basher

Age Range: 3 - 6

Pub Date: April 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-7534-6495-3
Publisher: Kingfisher

This is a full-bore, graphically conspicuous abecedary. Each letter of the alphabet gets a two-page spread. On the lower right is an alphabet line underscoring the letter of the moment; upper right features a word using that letter, with an illustration nestled neatly in between. Lower left displays the letter in both upper and lowercase, while the upper left unfurls a sentence using the letter to the maximum: “Brianna bounces beautiful bugs” (the bugs look quite content despite their manhandling). Basher’s party-colored artwork, boldly outlined images and china-doll faces have been successfully deployed in a number of elemental explorations—of color, shape and number, as well as basic scientific matters (Human Body: A Book with Guts!, 2011, etc.)—and they work constructively here, firmly grabbing the reader’s attention with their chromatic visual pizzazz. The choice of illustrative words is engagingly spot-on—milkshake, jellyfish, slug, igloo—with the right amount of challenge; indeed, a number will help build vocabulary as well as letter recognition, like yak (“Yoko’s yucky yellow yak yells yo!”) and cuckoo (“Claude’s crafty cuckoo collects coins.”). And for all those friends of the letters j and x and z, it is a great pleasure for them to get pages of their own, rather than corralled in with the k’s and y’s. (Picture book. 3-6)