Michael McCurdy The Sailor's Alphabet

ISBN 13: 9780395841679

The Sailor's Alphabet

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9780395841679: The Sailor's Alphabet
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In the 1800s, when sailing ships ruled the seas, chanteys were sung by sailors as they worked. The Sailor's Alphabet is a traditional alphabet chantey that not only captures the spirit of these songs and their times but also affords a stem-to-stern tour of a U.S. Navy frigate. From the topsails to the forecastle to the keelson, McCurdy piques young readers' interest in the high seas. Illustrated with stunningly rendered, detailed scratchboard drawings, this is an invigorating slice of United States history and a perfect book for ship lovers of all ages.

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About the Author:

Award-winning artist Michael McCurdy has illustrated more than 170 books for adults and children. His books often explore America’s past, bringing to life its history and traditions. He lives with his wife, Deborah, on a farm in western Massachusetts.

From Kirkus Reviews:

Some time in the 19th century, a sailor created this sea chantey, a rhythmic song to keep him and his mates working in tandem to keep a ship afloat. McCurdy (Trapped by the Ice!, 1997, etc.) has adapted the chantey into a picture book, with one line on each page``Oh, A is the anchor and that you all know''a scratchboard illustration, and a definition of terms below the picture. He makes a mighty effort toward clarity in describing and illustrating this US Navy frigate, although sometimes the vocabulary runs away with him, e.g., ``Capstan: A large, spool-shaped winch . . . turned by sailors using capstan bars.'' The function of chanteys is explained in a preface, and the whole chantey is reproduced at the end and keyed to an illustration of the full frigate, so all the parts can be seen together. The rectilinear geometry of the scratchboard illustrations is softened by watercolors to resemble old prints, and by the elegant angles found in various perspectives. The sailors in water-blue uniforms are young and rosy, or old and grizzled, and word-buffs and nautical enthusiasts will find plenty to pore overhalyards and lanyards, jibs and vangs. (Picture book. 5-9) -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Michael McCurdy
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers (1998)
ISBN 10: 0395841674 ISBN 13: 9780395841679
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Michael McCurdy
Published by Houghton Mifflin Books for Children (1998)
ISBN 10: 0395841674 ISBN 13: 9780395841679
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