Illustrator: Yusof Gajah Publisher's Review: Peter Duke
Pick up Yusof Gajah’s ABC and you will know from the cover it is a very different ABC from the many other hundreds that you will have seen in the bookshop and online. All the letters of the alphabet are taken from Yusof’s ‘Elephabet’ and the accompanying pictures from many of his much loved children’s books. You won’t be disappointed when you open to the first page and see one of Yusof’s wonderful trees.
Continue browsing and you will see a blue elephant looking decidedly blue, an extract from “Where is my Red Ball?” one of the books from Yusof’s set of early readers which has been translated into German, Korean and Arabic. At E, we find an eagle flying high. Yes, the eagle that Dill and his friend Musang, the civet cat, helped heal its broken wing in ‘Dill the Little Elephant’. Then we arrive at F. F is for fun! And look at those elephants having great fun in the pool.
After F there is a picture of a green iguana resting on a tree (I). There is something for everyone in this book, did you know iguanas live on land and are herbivores? J is for joy but we’ve already had fun, so let’s skip this picture and stop at L for love. The picture of love is taken from ‘Dill the Little Elephant’ when Dill finally finds his lost parents.
M is for moon. The picture for M is an elephant gazing at the moon which comes from Yusof’s famous ‘Real Elephant’. This book was the Grand prize Winner of the Noma Concourse (ACCU) Award in 1996.
There is O for Orange and a picture of an Orange Elephant with an orange ball and an Orange. This is taken from ‘Where is my Red Ball?’ But I like Q which of course is for question. But an elephant queen asking questions!
I am sure all the letters of the alphabet will please children and lovers of Yusof’s art. I want to close with my favourite illustration - Dill yodelling taken from ‘Dill the Little Elephant’. I think this picture just sums up this fun book.