Reviews for LMNO Peas

Booklist Reviews 2010 February #1
This cheerful alphabet book introduces each letter as a large, colorful shape surrounded by tiny pea creatures, green circles with arms, legs, eyes, mouths, and occasionally accessories such as hats, diving masks or flippers. The pea folk demonstrate occupations and actions beginning with each letter and identified in the rhyming, rhythmic text. The letters L, M, N, and O, which so often run meaninglessly together in the alphabet song, appear on the same double-page spread. Most of the other letters appear on their own pages or spreads, while the four pages devoted to the little characters' own letter, P, illustrate the lines "We're painters, / poets, / and plumbers fixing leaks. / We're pilots, / parachutists, / we're peas and . . . / we're unique." With its digital illustrations' luminous colors, buoyant spirit, and engaging characters, this handsome picture book is definitely worth a second look, even in the overcrowded field of alphabet books. Copyright 2010 Booklist Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2010 Fall
"We're acrobats, artists, and astronauts in space. / We're builders, bathers, and bikers in a race." In bouncy rhyming couplets, Baker goes through the alphabet and comes up with identities for peas. Visual and verbal jokes abound; this is a book for close examination rather than group sharing, rewarding attention with some clever ideas and many laughs. Copyright 2010 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2010 #2
You might not know it, but peas provide a terrific blank canvas for creating picture book characters. With the addition of two dots for eyes, a mouth, sproutlike arms and legs, and minimal accessories, a pea can become anything: "We're acrobats, artists, and astronauts in space. / We're builders, bathers, and bikers in a race." Baker goes through the alphabet and in bouncy rhyming couplets comes up with identities for peas. He makes clever use of the letters -- on the B page, those builders are working away at the top of the letter; the bathers take a bubble bath inside the lower opening of the letter, and the bikers race by on the ground below. Visual and verbal jokes abound, as on the page for the letter G, where peas form a circle and hand presents around to one another: "We're givers and takers." The tiny peas are set on large white pages dominated by the featured letter of the alphabet, making it a book for close examination rather than group use, rewarding attention with some clever ideas and many laughs. Copyright 2010 Horn Book Magazine Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2010 March #1
A passel of industrious peas narrates inventive, alphabetically arranged avocations: "We are peas--alphabet peas! / We work and play in the ABCs." Amid towering, digitally textured capital letters, Baker's veggies, sprouting green arms, legs and animated physiognomies, star in scores of charmingly detailed tableaux. At "F," farmers hoe and water at "Happea Farms," a duo waves checkered flags at a bike race's finish line and a quintet of friends jams in a band whose drum kit announces its name: "Pod." "K" features (soccer) kickers, kayakers navigating the letter's watery, angled bend and a couple of kings--one atop a tower with crown and scepter, the other crooning into a mike below (he's Elvis, of course). The well-chosen text type, Frankfurter Medium, pudgy and whimsical, proves eminently crisp and legible for emergent readers. This high-energy romp invites repeat visits by young browsers--there's plenty to pore over and giggle about. Delicious! Peas out. (Picture book. 3-7) Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2010 March #4

Hundreds of animated green peas tumble through the alphabet in this refreshingly original book. The illustrations are full of vitality and good humor, and the rhyming text never misses a beat. Each large, pastel letter is accompanied by energetic peas introducing themselves ("We're acrobats, artists, and astronauts in space"). Most letters occupy a single page, but Baker combines some letters the way children repeating a just-learned alphabet often do. The peas are all small and round, but Baker (Just How Long Can a Long String Be?!) gives them stick legs and arms, along with lively faces and costumes, to demonstrate his inventive view of each letter. To illustrate the letters H and I ("We're hikers, inventors, and investigators"), two peas climb a branch leaning on the H, a pea in a Sherlock Holmes hat tries to decipher footprints below, and a single pea with a light bulb above his head, smiles at his newly invented wheel that dots the letter I. Baker's after-the-Z surprise ending is a question for readers: "Now tell us, please... WHO ARE YOU?" Ages 3-7. (Apr.)

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School Library Journal Reviews 2010 March

PreS-Gr 1--Humble green peas provide inspiration in this hilarious, occupation-based romp through the alphabet. Four-inch-high letters on each page serve as an ingenious architectural platform around, above, and inside of which dozens of "pea-ple" swarm in joyful pursuit of myriad types of work. Bouncy, rhyming text introduces the alphabet peas as "acrobats, artists, and astronauts in space, builders, bathers, and bikers in a race," with unpaid "voters and volunteers" receiving their due, too. Baker's inventive details belie the "as alike as two peas in a pod" adage; each and every amusing personalized pea is as unique as a snowflake--and that's the point. The digitally rendered illustrations glow in vibrant, textured colors that boldly leap off the page against a background of ample white space. The sheer fun of the rhythmic text and the large alphabet letters work well for a read-aloud audience, but the busy, engaging details of the peas in their various worker modes are better suited for one-on-one exploration that young children will want to pore over again and again.--Kathleen Finn, St. Francis Xavier School, Winooski, VT

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