Against black glossy pages marked with white lines that resemble those of a freshly paved highway, readers see road signs for every letter of the alphabet. The signs, with their bright colors, pop against the black background of each page. And for every road sign, there is an uppercase letter clearly depicted nearby. The book begins with a child and his parent in a yellow car, traveling down the highway. The text (actually, the only text in the book) reads: “Vroom! Vroom! From the backseat, what do you see?” Then we’re off on an alphabet-spying adventure. For A, there is an airport sign (with an image of an airplane). Then there’s B for “bike route” and C for “children at play.” It’s fantastic how van Lieshout was able to find real road signs to represent all 26 letters—for example, H is for “heliport”, Q is for “quack” (a duck-crossing sign), and V is for “van-accessible.” The last letter is represented by a lodging sign (symbolized by a figure lying in bed). Accompanying it are the letters “zzzzzzzzzz” and we see the yellow car again—but now, the child is fast asleep in the backseat.
Backseat readers rejoice! Kids will have fun not only learning their letters, but also discovering what all those colorful road signs stand for.
What is your favorite A-B-C book for kids?
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Sandra Lee Rella, mother of two budding bookworms, is a freelance editor and writer, and a former children’s book review editor.
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