cover image Annie, Bea, and Chi Chi Dolores: A School Day Alphabet

Annie, Bea, and Chi Chi Dolores: A School Day Alphabet

Donna Maurer. Orchard Books (NY), $15.95 (1pp) ISBN 978-0-531-05467-3

With its minimal text and big, bold type, this amiable alphabet book is ideal for youngsters just starting to sound out words. Except for a very few entries (``untangling,'' ``vamoose''), the single word or brief phrase used to exemplify each letter is easy enough for beginning readers to decipher. Maurer's first book centers on the three animal friends who ride the bus to kindergarten (``all aboard''), embrace one another upon arrival ('``buddies''), engage in some typical school activities (``counting,'' ``drawing,'' ``erasing'') and so on, until their day--and the alphabet--is finished, and Annie and Bea struggle to get Chi Chi Dolores into her jacket (``zip''). Cazet's ( ``Never Spit on Your Shoes'' ; A Fish in His Pocket ) wry watercolors portray some highly comical shenanigans: for Show and Tell, Chi Chi Dolores opens a jar full of slimy, sluglike creatures (``icky'') that slither all over the room; and the trio of pals engage in a rather unorthodox art project as they are pictured ``painting'' their shoes. Kids will love it. Ages 3-5. (Mar.)