« Alphabet books are a secret passion among book lovers. The sheer number of ABC books published demonstrates that they hold a special place in the world of children’s books. Entering the term on Amazon.com delivers 13,089 results (and that was a few days ago – it’s probably up to 14,000 by now). Almost any author you can name has done an ABC book, from Edward Lear to Maira Kalman, from Beatrix Potter to William Steig, from Edward Gorey to Chris Van Allsburg, from H.A. Rey to Mitsumasa Anno, from Jon Agee to – drat, I can’t find a Z! – Jane Yolen.
My pick for this year’s most beautiful gift book is “ABC3D” by Marion Bataille (A Neal Porter Book/Roaring Brook Press: $19.95, all ages). A French graphic artist and book designer, Bataille finds relationships among the letters of the alphabet that you’ve never considered – but that seem self-evident – as they are revealed in her sculptural pop-up pages. There is a spectacular simplicity to her three-color forms that only the most brilliantly thought-out ideas have. The letter C flips over to reveal the vertical that turns it into a D. As X’s page opens, its right leg slides out of sight to leave a perfect Y. V, set against a reflective facing page, forms the letter W when held at the proper angle. »
(Source: Nicolas Marier)