R efreshingly predictable in its alphabetical “A is for…” format, Christopher Franceschelli’s board book Alphablock is a book that you absolutely must have in your 1 to 4 year-old’s book collection.
When a representative from Abrams books emailed me to inquire as to whether or not I’d like to review their new children’s book, I was immediately intrigued. The bright colors, die-cut lettering, and beautiful pictures had me excited, which speaks volumes about how stylish, slick, and beautiful this book truly is.
My children absolutely love books that they can interact with. Once we received Alphablock, my twins were immediately fascinated and drawn in by the cheery graphics and the cutout characters. Alphablock’s illustrator Peskimo worked magic with retro-inspired drawings that kept my kids actively guessing with every flip of a letter.
The die-cut lettering gave my kids the opportunity to peek through each character’s familiar holes, curves, and angles where they were given visual clues as to what the letter stood for. I found my daughter creating her own, dare I say, brilliant scenarios as to what each letter represented.
“K is for cloud!” she told me exuberantly as she pointed to the pointy clouds that peeked through the angles of the letter “K”. Although she was incorrect, I was tickled at how Alphablock was encouraging my baby girl to analyze and think. (The K was actually for the kite that was revealed in its entirety on the next page; but that was a wonderful guess wasn’t it? ;)) I corrected her gently and we moved on.
A jaunty red bird greeted us on the “N” page and a collection of small sticks and branches peeked through the N’s slant cleverly hinting at the word that the letter represented. On the next page we were greeted by the same friendly red bird that was now happily tending to her babies in their nest. This book was so neat!
Alphablock is brilliantly designed – the die-cut lettering is reminiscent of the artist Thomas Allen and his children’s book cut out art. The peek-through lettering, combined with the smart illustrations and simple and pretenseless writing will encourage your children to see, learn, and absorb the alphabet in a unique and beautiful way.
Alphablock is a must-have book in every kid’s library. My kids absolutely loved it, and I’m positive that yours will too.