#447 – The Wizard of OZ ABCs by Jeni Wittrock & Timothy Banks

oz abcsThe Wizard of Oz ABCs

by Jeni Wittrock

Timothy Banks, illustrator

Capstone Young Readers

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Back Cover:  The Land of Oz is full of letters, As and Bs and Cs and Ds. From Auntie Em to farmhand Zeke, some great and powerful letters you’ll see!

Opening:  Letter A is for Auntie Em. B is for a balloon ride. A cyclone spins at letter C. D is Dorothy, no surprise!

About the Book & What I Thought

The Wizard of Oz ABCs released in time for the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz—the movie, not the book. The anniversary is actually next August 2014, but Warner Brothers, Disney, and every other company involved in the celebration have begun the party. This ABC book uses the movie/book—or is it book/movie—in reference to every letter of the alphabet.

W is the Wicked Witch of the West. When she melts, Winkies rejoice!”

The book cleverly uses events, people, and places to bring each letter to the forefront for young children. There are no scares here, not even from the Wicked Witch or Oz when he uses his booming voice (V).fr 1

“The Lion (L), roars (R) and everyone runs.”

Y is yellow bricks because they lead the way to letter Z, in the merry old Land of Oz!”

The illustrations are bright, cheerful renditions of iconic characters and places. Dorothy, the Tin Man, Scarecrow, and Lion show up in several places. Toto, the small little dog that Dorothy loved, shows up only once, under letter . . . I cannot spoil the fun and divulge the letter. I think young kids learning the alphabet will like this ABC book.

The Wizard of Oz ABCs is fun to look at, has great characters, even if you do not know the story. The pages are thick cardboard that will withstand most children’s little hands, smeared peanut butter and jelly, and getting tossed instead of shelved. The cover is inviting and colorful enough that it will catch children’s eyes. There is no darkness in the book, not even when a tornado lifts Dorothy’s house up into the sky in the state of Kansas (K).

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Children will be familiar with every character from Oz before they watch the movie for the first time. That is not the goal of The Wizard of Oz ABCs. The goal is to teach young children the English alphabet in a fun and memorable way. I think the book accomplishes this.

The Wizard of Oz ABC is not the only board book for soon-to-be new Oz fans. There is also a book on colors, counting, and shapes.

oz colors oz counting oz shapes

The Wizard of Oz ABCs

by Jeni Wittrock    facebook    linkedin    pinterest

Timothy Banks, illustrator    website     blog     facebook     twitter     flicker

Capstone Young Readers    website    blog    facebook    twitter

Released September 1, 2013

ISBN:  978-1-4765-3769-6

20 pages

Age 1 to 5

also available for Kindle

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© 2014 by Capstone Young Readers, used with permission

Text copyright © 2013 by Jeni Wittrock

Illustrations copyright © 2013 by Timothy Banks

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Capstone Young Readers is an imprint of Capstone Young Readers

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wizard of oz abc

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17 thoughts on “#447 – The Wizard of OZ ABCs by Jeni Wittrock & Timothy Banks

  1. Pingback: review#455 – The Bad Alphabet by E. C. Chen | Kid Lit Reviews

  2. Pingback: BOOK REVIEW: "The Wizard of Oz - The 75th Anniversary Companion" - Lez Get Real

  3. I’m a huge fan of the movie version of THE WIZARD OF OZ, not the Baum books! lol It’s the exact opposite of all my other experiences in which I am typically disappointed by the movies. I like the idea of using it as the backdrop for concept books though 😀

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    • I read the other day that there are something like 47 books in the series Baum wrote. I knew there were three but 47? He kept writing them to keep food I the table from what the article said. People loved them and he’d sell out the first day.

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      • I’m thinking that, for that time period, the books were unusual and entertaining. Also, I know there are many people who read them as children and loved them, and I think it’s largely due to the fact that they were children when they first read them. For me, I read the first book as an adult and writer, and honestly, I absolutely hated it, literally from the very first page! I wanted to see the difference between the book and the movie to see how it was adapted, and this was one time I sincerely felt (feel) strongly about the movie version FAR outdoing the book/s. It is virtually always vice versa, where the book always outshines the movie adaptation. The writers and directors involved with the original film (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0032138/fullcredits?ref_=tt_ov_wr#writers) were creative geniuses, in my opinion.

        Anyway, I forced myself to finish Baum’s first installment of “Oz” and it was like pulling my literary teeth to get through it, sorry to say.

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    • I agree the characters are not what we are used to. If you look at the other three books in the series (covers above), they all look “different.” I am not sure I like this and those that grew up on the yearly TV movie “special presentation” may not either.

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