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Alpha    by Isabelle Arsenault order for
by Isabelle Arsenault
Order:  USA  Can
Candlewick, 2015 (2015)
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Isabelle Arsenault's Alpha combines an alphabet book (based on the phonetic or military alphabet) with a guessing game that promotes discussion.

The images are clear, beautifully painted, and rather old-fashioned in style. The alphabet goes from Alpha to Zulu (the picture with the latter is a Zulu mask). Hands clap for Bravo, Charlie has a Chaplin hat, Oscar is portrayed by a fashionable gown, and so on.

I like the idea of the phonetic alphabet and associated images that will result in a dialogue. But I do wonder how many of these illustrations will be over the heads of the picture book audience.

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