Friday, July 19, 2013

Z is for Moose

I served as a member of the Texas 2x2 Reading List Committee for two years and chair for an additional two. I befriended a number of marketing reps for large and small publishing houses during my term as chair. Through emails, telephone conversations, and eventually face to face meetings I developed a close bond with some of these reps by the end of my term.

I clearly remember visiting the Harper Collins booth during the 2012 American Library Association Midwinter Conference in Dallas. As soon as Patty Rosati saw me she pulled me over to the children's section of the booth and grabbed a galley of a new book she knew I needed to see. That was the first time I saw Z is for Moose.

I read through the book and laughed at the antics of Moose. I fell in love with him and I knew right then and there it was a great contender for the 2013 2x2 Reading List. The problem, I would be rotating off the committee at the end of April! I tried to keep the galley, but Patty made me give it back to her. I think she even watched me as I walked out of the booth so I wouldn't go back and put it in my conference bag. I guess she knows me well enough to know when I love a book I will do just about anything to get a copy, even if it has yet to be published.

Thankfully the committee members who followed saw the same joy and laughter Moose would provide for so many children when they placed it on the 2013 Texas 2x2 Reading List!

Z is for Moose
written by Kelly Bingham
illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky
Have you ever tried to read a children's picture book without looking at the illustrations? Well, that is exactly what I tried to do with Z is for Moose. I have to say it is nearly impossible to read without having the image of Moose trying to take over the spotlight from the various items representing each of the letters. Now, he does not barge onto every page, but he is lurking, just waiting for his time to shine!

Children of all ages will laugh out loud at the antics of Moose, but I'm sure they will see themselves as well. We all want to be accepted and acknowledged. Moose is no different. We can all relate to Moose's disappointment when he is overlooked for his letter. But, don't worry, Bingham has made a happy ending for all when Moose is brought into the spotlight. Now, for those of you who have not had the great fortune to read this fun book yet, I want you to think about how Z is for Moose! Just for fun, write it down, then read the book to see if you were right. I don't want to give it away because it is just such a perfect ending for a book written especially for children in the range of the Texas 2x2 Reading List - age two to grade two!

I want you to also look at all of the illustrations very carefully. Look at how masterfully Zelinsky (I think he really loves this book because of the big bold Z) opens the book. Be sure to look at the line of characters standing in front of the stairs. When you open to the dedication page, you can see them a little better. Be sure to observe the details he has included.  Then, when you start reading the text, focus on some of the details. Study the text and how it is jumbled across some the pages. Every detail has been carefully placed so the person reading this alphabet book, can actually tell what each letter should represent.

I love this book! I love the text. I love the illustrations. I have to say it is a beautiful union of two great talents. I not only enjoyed the laughter this book brings, but also the sentimental message at the end.

As you can probably guess, I most highly recommend Z is for Moose for any personal and library collection. It is most suited for ages two to grade two, but I think children of all ages will enjoy this romp through the alphabet.

If you LOVE Moose as much as I do, then check out the blog Ms. Bingham has set up - Moose on Earth. It is fun to see all of the places Moose will turn up.


Elizabeth Rose Stanton said...


Texas Library Lady said...

I really LOVE Moose and got very excited when I saw not only his blog, but also the pictures of him from all over. I have GOT to get me a Moose before the school year begins. He will be my buddy during the school year! "wherever I go, he goes."