A Is for Audra: Broadway’s Leading Ladies from A to Z

John Robert Allman, illus. by Peter Emmerich. Doubleday, $18.99 (48p) ISBN 978-0-525-64540-5

This inclusive rhyming abecedarian begins with Audra McDonald and ends with Liza Minnelli. A roster of showstopping women (though Bob Fosse and Stephen Sondheim elbow their way in) and iconic female roles are shouted out in quippy, singsong verse—“ ‘I’s for Idina,/ whose vocals you’ll know/ from Wicked or Rent/ or from ‘letting it go.’ ” The book is really meant for Broadway buffs, with the text offering fawning raves in lieu of contextualizing information (“She’s brilliant and bold and has talent in meters... Ladies and gentlemen, Bernadette Peters!”). Captions identify each performer and role, and Emmerich’s flattering caricatures, paired with each verse, are colorful and slick, bringing Broadway’s drama to the page. An index offers brief career highlights for each individual mentioned. Ages 3–7. [em](Nov.) [/em]