CM . . .
. Volume XIII Number 8 . . . .December 8, 2006
Over the past few years, alphabet books such as this one have become increasingly popular. These books cover a wide variety of topics—ballet, poetry, hockey, to name a few—and provide readers with general information. However, with various authors and publishing companies involved in producing the books, there is bound to be some inconsistency in the quality of the writing. W is for Wind: A Weather Alphabet has both strengths and weaknesses.
On the plus side, all of the pages have a similar layout. Each letter of the alphabet is presented in upper and lower case on a wide colored band with one or two entries. For example, the entries for the letter “D” are dew point and dust devil. These terms are explained in short paragraphs giving just the basic facts. A four-line poem and an accompanying illustration enhance the text. Almost half of the entries are shown on double-page spreads. Topics include different types of precipitation, extreme weather, the ozone layer, glaciers and tools used by weather forecasters. Measurements are written both in metric and Imperial form. The book’s main strength lies in the wonderful colour illustrations, some of which have been infused with a bit of humour. For instance, the “C is for Cloud” page shows two youngsters relaxing on a hay bale and gazing at a large sheep-shaped cloud while, in the distance, a flock of sheep is grazing; on the “P is for Precipitation” page, a dog owner takes her pet out on a snowy day so the pet can produce a little “precipitation” of his own. Although the illustrations are lively and bright, there are a few which don’t completely relate to the text. The drawing for “B”, for example, matches the main text but not the poem.
Gail Hamilton is a teacher-librarian in Winnipeg, MB.
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other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.