Alphabet

There are no words in this book, apart from the author's introduction to the work which states briefly "The heroes in this book are the letters of the alphabet….". A winner of a special prize at the Bologna Children's Book Fair, this book is a showcase for one of the world's best illustrators of modern times. Probably best know for her book The Sun Is Yellow, a winner of the Hans Christian Andersen award in 1992, this is Kveta Pacovska's celebration of the letters of the alphabet and of how the shapes and forms of the various letters might be explored and experimented with using a variety of both 2D and 3D techniques within the format of the pop up book. This playful and imaginative book, beautifully presented, is deceptively simple at first glance. However, a second look reveals the wealth of art techniques used by the author that include textures, cut aways, pop ups, reflections and windows. 

A book that should appeal to both older readers, teens and adults who are interested in the subjects of visual arts and illustration, it could however be used by any classroom teacher as a stimulus for some basic design work with any group of children using the theme of lettering/numbers as a starting point for drawing, collage, paint, print or construction activities. An infants teacher might use the book as the central focus for an exploration of each letter sound and a creative teacher can probably imagine a variety of other uses for the book.

A good introduction to the wealth of excellent children's books published by the Tate over the years, an expensive purchase but recommended for older children.