Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Graphic Alphabet Hardcover – Sep 1 1996


See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Hardcover
"Please retry"
CDN$ 11.71 CDN$ 0.01

2014 Books Gift Guide for Children & Teens
Browse our featured books to find gift ideas for the boys or girls on your holiday shopping list this year!

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought



Product Details

  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Orchard Books (Sept. 1 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0531360016
  • ISBN-13: 978-0531360019
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 25.4 x 26 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #813,708 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Amazon

Most alphabet books for pre-readers and early readers set out to make the somewhat abstract idea of letters as clear and as clearly linked to words as possible. In The Graphic Alphabet, graphic designer David Pelletier has created an alphabet book that aims to explore letters for their beauty and complexity as design elements as well as help teach kids how to read. His "A," for example, stands for "avalanche," and with its normally pointed top tumbling down the right diagonal, the letter doesn't just stand for the avalanche, it becomes the word. Pelletier is equally ingenious throughout. And while this might not be the best book to make the concept of letters concrete for youngsters, it will certainly help instill in them a sense of wonder about letters and words.

From Publishers Weekly

This arresting alphabet book is far removed from the "A is for Apple" school of abecedaries. Here, A is for Avalanche, and the churning snow in the accompanying illustration crumbles from the summit of an A-shaped mountain. B is for Bounce, and the arcing path of a blue ball loops to form the outer curves of that letter. Each of the 26 letters is thus ingeniously featured in an illustration that represents the word in question. Glossy and elegant, Pelletier's debut work is striking for the clean lines of its images and the overarching simplicity of its composition. Each letter is showcased against a sleek black background, vivid colors against a square of darkness. There is humor here, too: set sideways, the letter D glows as a horned red devil; in a ghoulish X ray two bony fingers overlap to form an X. Even so, this book is too sophisticated for kids just learning their ABC's; it may best suit older children with an interest in art and adults with an interest in graphic design. All ages.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Explore More
Concordance
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most helpful customer reviews

By A Customer on July 2 1997
Format: Hardcover
I'm torn! Is this a children's book or something I put on my coffee table? It's that good!

Instead of cute pictures in bright colors representing letters, Pelletier takes a graphically unusual look at the alphabet using everything from color and graphic images to different varnishes to get across his message. The colors are bright with a black background that jump off the page.

The unique images are clever and engaging. One of my favorites is the x-ray of a hand with crossing fingers for X.

Have a child; know someone who does; looking for something interesting as an ice breaker? Take a look at this book!
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Format: Hardcover
This is an alphabet book for children in which each letter is coupled with a word that is graphicly illustrated by the letter. For example, the letter A is accompanied by the word avalanche and one leg of the letter is collapsing as in an avalanch. The book was a 1997 Caldecott Honor book (i.e., a runner-up to the Medal winner) for best illustrations in a book for children. Children will enjoy identifying the letter with the "concept" representing it.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
By A Customer on Aug. 5 1998
Format: Hardcover
Although I did enjoy the art in this book, wasn't this book originally called "The Z Was Zapped" by the genius author/illustrator Chris Van Allsburg? Just by adding color doesn't make this a revolutionary book. My kids love the mystery and anticipation that comes with Mr. Van Allsburg's story, and I love how it challenges and promotes that higher level of thinking and word construction. Thank you, but I'll be sticking with Chris.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Format: Hardcover
I wondered how could an alphabet book win a Caldecott Honor. I examined this book with my class of 10 year olds. They loved it and it inspired them to write their own. This book isn't just for little ones learning their alphabet!
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 15 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
A for Apple? Not any more! July 2 1997
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I'm torn! Is this a children's book or something I put on my coffee table? It's that good!

Instead of cute pictures in bright colors representing letters, Pelletier takes a graphically unusual look at the alphabet using everything from color and graphic images to different varnishes to get across his message. The colors are bright with a black background that jump off the page.

The unique images are clever and engaging. One of my favorites is the x-ray of a hand with crossing fingers for X.

Have a child; know someone who does; looking for something interesting as an ice breaker? Take a look at this book!
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
History repeating itself? Aug. 5 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Although I did enjoy the art in this book, wasn't this book originally called "The Z Was Zapped" by the genius author/illustrator Chris Van Allsburg? Just by adding color doesn't make this a revolutionary book. My kids love the mystery and anticipation that comes with Mr. Van Allsburg's story, and I love how it challenges and promotes that higher level of thinking and word construction. Thank you, but I'll be sticking with Chris.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
An ABC book which uses the letters themselves as examples. May 29 1999
By R. D. Allison (dallison@biochem.med.ufl.edu) - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This is an alphabet book for children in which each letter is coupled with a word that is graphicly illustrated by the letter. For example, the letter A is accompanied by the word avalanche and one leg of the letter is collapsing as in an avalanch. The book was a 1997 Caldecott Honor book (i.e., a runner-up to the Medal winner) for best illustrations in a book for children. Children will enjoy identifying the letter with the "concept" representing it.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Not just for little ones Jan. 15 2001
By D. King - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I wondered how could an alphabet book win a Caldecott Honor. I examined this book with my class of 10 year olds. They loved it and it inspired them to write their own. This book isn't just for little ones learning their alphabet!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A witty alphabet book Sept. 14 2004
By Kara Reuter - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
In an epilogue to his 1997 Caldecott Honor Book The Graphic Alphabet, David Pelletier explains his aim: "the illustration of the letterform had to retain the natural shape of the letter as well as represent the meaning of the word." The letter does not simply stand for the word, it becomes the word. So, a "D" represents the devil, by resting on its round side with serifs accentuated into horns; three "O"'s hang from strings as ornaments; "X" is represented in an x-ray image of crossed finger-bones. Each of the letters receives one page, on which the letter appears within a black box, with the word it represents printed below. The bright colors against the black background give the illustrations an intense and dramatic mood, with a sharp quality; the glossy paper plays up the clean lines of the work. Some of the illustrations are obscure and the letters so altered and distorted as to be unrecognizable; sometimes the illustrations seem a bit like an exercise for a graphic design class and not an instructional tool. This book is certainly not appropriate for making the concept of letters concrete for young children, though children who are newly able to recognize letterforms may appreciate extending their knowledge with this book.


Feedback