Book Review: Eating the Alphabet

Rating: ★★★★☆

Eating the Alphabet is a deliciously simple artistic presentation of many fruits and vegetables, organized by the letters of the alphabet.  Each fruit or vegetable is depicted in watercolor collage that is somewhat reminiscent of Eric Carle‘s style.  The alphabet format combined with artistic constraints make for some interesting food choices: ugli fruit, jicama, and xigua are some less-familiar choices, presented right along with apples, bananas, and potatoes.  Although toddlers tend to gravitate toward realistic pictures, the bright colors and appealing presentation will endear this book to them.  For older readers, a glossary of foods provides a bit more information.

The text is limited to the names of different foods (given in both capitals and lowercase letters), making it a slower read-aloud than most preschool books.  Although vocabulary-based books are usually quite dull for adults to read, the unusual medium, the inclusion of exotic foods, and alphabet format make this an attractive read-aloud with some educational value.

Although the book may appeal best to toddlers, I recommend the paperback or hardback version, since the glossary is not included in the board book version.

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Publication Information: Ehlert, Lois. Eating the Alphabet. Harcourt. 1989. ISBN: 0152244360.
Categories: 4 Stars, Age 00-04
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Posted on March 11, 2011

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