Search-and-Find A Number of Numbers
AJ Wood, Mike Jolley and Allan Sanders
Wide Eyed Editions
What at first glance appears a relatively simple search-and-find counting book rapidly becomes a totally immersive experience in the hands of Amanda Wood, Mike Jolley and Allan Sanders.
Once you dive into the pages comprising their sequence of zany spreads with scenes as diverse as a monocyclist, marine life, a castle scene, and canines galore – both adult and pups, you’ll find it hard to stop before the end.
This playful offering will surely have a wide age appeal – pre-schoolers for instance will relish the number 3 pages whereon nursery favourites the ‘3 blind mice,’ rhyme, the 3 bears, the 3 billy-goats gruff and the 3 little pigs all put in an appearance along with a host of other items in 3s, to locate.
Few of any age will be able to resist the delicious picnic spread out along the banks of a meandering river (number 10,) or the 19 robot with all manner of inappropriate items left inside by its absent-minded boffin constructor.
Another of my favourite spreads is 5 with its splendidly embroidered woolly glove – perfect to wear in chilly weather.
By the time anyone reaches the 100 challenge – a building site – their counting fingers will likely be all a-tingle and their eyes agog; and their visual skills will most definitely have been honed considerably, thanks to every one of Allan Sanders splendidly eccentric scenes. But there’s still one final challenge …
Brilliantly playful and playfully brilliant – don’t miss it!
Search-and-Find Alphabet of Alphabets
Allan Sanders, Mike Jolley and Amanda Wood
There are countless alphabet books for children, mainly aimed at youngsters who are learning about letters and their order. This is altogether different: a search-and-find book where each of the 26 letters in the alphabet has a different theme.
Thus A is for Alphabet and introduces the remaining letters and their topic – B is for birds; C for Creepy-Crawlies; D is for Dinosaurs, E is for Earth and so on.
Within each topic is another A to Z, so for instance, readers need to find the bird that represents each letter from Albatross to Zebra finch.
In some spreads the items to find are captioned …
whereas in others such as the Forest spread there’s a key on the edge of each page showing and captioning the things to look for within the main illustration, adding an extra dimension of fun.
The vocabulary is at times fairly challenging: the Toyshop spread for example includes a Zoetrope while Neighbourhood has a Viaduct and an Underpass as well as a Duck pond and a Road.
Two of my favourite spreads are W whereon we’re welcomed to a ‘wacky wardrobe of things to wear’…
and School where it’s the pupils’ names that represent the letters of the alphabet and we have to name their associated objects.
The authors admit to the odd spot of rule bending when it comes to X: some of the words don’t begin with X but have it somewhere within them and as for Q well, there’s a crown wearing queenie who insists on popping up everywhere!
Allan Sanders has a superb eye when it comes to design: every spread looks totally different and enormously inviting.
All in all, 1 crackingly clever, original book; 26 awesome alphabets and 676 terrific things to find.