cover image Animal ABC

Animal ABC

Marcus Pfister. North-South (Ingram, dist.), $17.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-7358-4136-9

From alligator to zebra, Pfister takes readers on an alphabetical tour of the animal kingdom, with just a few departures from reality—U is for a unicorn (“I’m a horse with a spiral horn./ In someone’s dream I was born”) and X is represented by a hybrid frog/duck/xylophone creature, a xylophonius. Pfister’s paintings have the cabbage-leaf texture of his recent books including Ava’s Poppy and Questions, Questions; impressively, it’s just as successful at conjuring the fur of a hare or orangutan as it is at approximating iguana hide and quetzal plumage. Although the book’s verse is a bit stilted, Pfister’s skillful paintings will hold young readers’ attention. Ages 4–8. (Sept.)