CM . . . . Volume XVII Number 8. . . .October 22, 2010.
Canadian Rockies ABC.
Banff, AB: Summerthought, 2010.
32 pp., hardcover, $14.95.
English language-Alphabet-Juvenile literature.
Rocky Mountains, Canadian (B.C. and Alta.)-Pictorial works-Juvenile literature.
Preschool-kindergarten / Ages 2-5.
Review by Andrea Galbraith.
Aa is for alpine adventure and fun
Bb is for bear sound asleep in the sun
The Rocky Mountains are attractively presented in this alphabet book featuring peaks, waterways, wildlife and alpine activities. The text is in verse, and each word is illustrated with a painting or collage. The text flows well for the most part, but there are a few awkward breaks in the meter. The illustrations use a warm and inviting palette with tangerine and other shades of orange, robin's egg blue, and mint and jade green being prominent. Most illustrations concretely present an object or concept, either in the overall scene (e.g. camping), or in an element of the foreground (e.g. "quills of a porcupine"). A few of the pictures are not as straightforward, and that may cause problems for some readers. "Uu is for uphill" shows a mountain goat climbing a rocky peak. While not in the immediate centre of the image, the goat is the element to which the eye is drawn, and readers may want to focus on this concrete object.
A nice detail is that each letter is given in upper and lower case. The text is printed in a casual bold font large enough to be easily readable without overshadowing the artwork. The jacketless, square format hardcover is sturdy and attractive and is printed on thick paper suitable for toddlers to handle.
Andrea Galbraith, a writer, librarian and parent, lives in Vancouver, BC.
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