Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Book Review: LMNO Peas by Keith Baker

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Fun pictures and creative way to teach the alphabet
Cons: May not need if already have other alphabet books
The Bottom Line
Alphabet alive
With fun illustrations, rhymes
As these peas do things

People, or I Should Say Peas, Doing Things Teach the Alphabet

There are plenty of books on the market that teach the alphabet.  And most of them teach it using objects.  They're fine, but they show little creativity.  That's where LMNO Peas comes in.  This book will teach the alphabet in a way you and your kid will enjoy.

This book uses small peas as a substitute for people, but each letter finds the peas doing something or at least being something.  For example, for A we get an astronaut in space while U brings up underwater divers and V serves up voters and volunteers.  Some letters only get one mention while others get multiple ones.

Just the fact that author Keith Baker uses jobs and hobbies alone makes this book standout.  But the book also rhymes.  A couple of the rhymes are forced, but most of them work remarkably well.  That shows a level of creativity I don't have.

Then there are the fun illustrations.  Each page includes the letter or letters currently being used.  The peas are around the letter showing off what they are doing.  For example, on the top level of the E, we've got people sitting at a table Eating a meal.  The next level has two Electricians at work.  Finally, we have Explorers looking at a map.  My favorite, however, is U, which has the peas diving underwater into the sea held in the U.  The colors are vibrant, and a full compliment is used, although one or two usually dominate each page.

There are maybe a half a dozen to a dozen words per two page spread, so it doesn't take long to read at all.  Sometimes, the peas actually do say things, and you have to read that too for the rhymes to work.  But there are so many things to look at in the pictures that your kid will enjoy looking at it for quite a while.  (And look for the bonus king at K.)

I wouldn't call this a must have alphabet book.  It's fun, but if you already have several, you probably don't need more.  However, if you are looking to add some alphabet books to your child's library, be sure to consider LMNO Peas.

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