Perfect Picture Book Friday: AN INCONVENIENT ALPHABET Plus Giveaway

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday, my friends. Here is another book I’ve been anxious to spotlight…ever since I read an early draft of it during a manuscript exchange with one of my critique buddies. It’s actually just hot off the press as you’ll see by the publication date below. I am so darn excited for the talented Beth Anderson…and you’ll get to meet her tomorrow when she stops by to chat on Will Write for Cookies. Plus she’s graciously agreed to do a giveaway…so make sure you leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of her debut picture book, AN INCOVENIENT ALPHABET: Ben Franklin & Noah Webster’s Spelling Revolution.

inconvenient alphabet


Written by Beth Anderson

Illustrated by Elizabeth Buddeley

Published by Simon and Schuster (September 25, 2018)

Ages: 4-8

Themes: American history, spelling, humor

Synopsis: From Amazon:

Delightful, relatable, and eye-catchingly illustrated.”School Library Journal
Deelytful and iloominaating for noo and seesuned reeders alyk.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Thought-provoking and entertaining.” —School Library Connection
“Engaging…A comprehensible, lively read.” —Publishers Weekly

Do you ever wish English was eez-ee-yer to spell? Ben Franklin and Noah Webster did! Debut author Beth Anderson and the New York Times bestselling illustrator of I Dissent, Elizabeth Baddeley, tell the story of two patriots and their attempt to revolutionize the English alphabet.

Once upon a revolutionary time, two great American patriots tried to make life easier. They knew how hard it was to spell words in English. They knew that sounds didn’t match letters. They knew that the problem was an inconvenient English alphabet.

In 1786, Ben Franklin, at age eighty, and Noah Webster, twenty-eight, teamed up. Their goal? Make English easier to read and write. But even for great thinkers, what seems easy can turn out to be hard.

Children today will be delighted to learn that when they “sound out” words, they are doing eg-zakt-lee what Ben and Noah wanted.

Why I like this book:

  • I love books that bring history alive – especially little known stories like this one. Why didn’t they have books like this when I was a kid?
  • The text is fabulous…punny and funny and shows a great depth of research on the part of Beth Anderson, the author. 
  • Illustrator Elizabeth Baddeley’s work is absolutely breathtaking! Bold! Hilarious! And totally Spot On! Kids are going to LOVE this book and so will teachers, librarians, and parents!
  • Wonderfully informative author’s note at the end of the book.
  • PLUS…there is also a super cool CURRICULUM GUIDE for teachers and school librarians who want to extend the learning experience after reading AN INCONVENIENT ALPHABET.


letter a, letter b, letter c, letter dPhoto courtesy:

There are crafts here from A to Z. For detailed instructions:

For more wonderful picture book reviews and activities for kids, please hop over to Susanna Hill’s Perfect Picture Book Friday post where lots of lovers of picture books congregrate.

I hope you all have a super weekend. The fall foliage is in full swing in New England and I hope, wherever you are, you are getting out to enjoy your days. Please don’t forget to leave a comment below for a chance to win a copy of the book…when you read the book, don’t forget to leave a review on Amazon or Goodreads…and please do come back tomorrow to chat with Beth on Will Write for Cookies.

About viviankirkfield

Writer for children - Reader forever Mom of 3, educator, author of FOUR OTTERS TOBOGGAN: AN ANIMAL COUNTING BOOK (Pomegranate Press, 2019), PIPPA'S PASSOVER PLATE (Holiday House, 2019), FROM HERE TO THERE: INVENTIONS THAT CHANGED THE WAY WE MOVE (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2019), SWEET DREAMS, SARAH (Creston Books, 2019), picture book junkie, lover of travel, hiking, fly-fishing, cooking, and playing Monopoly with my 9-year old grandson.

Posted on September 28, 2018, in book giveaway, Craft Activity for Kids, Susanna Leonard Hill's Perfect Picture Book Friday, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 34 Comments.

  1. I luv this book! I reseeved (okay, enough of that!) my copy this week and am not ready to part with it. If I should happen to win this one, I’ll gladly post it for another lucky person’s chance to win. This is such a fun book. I know it will soar and become a favorite with kids!….and, I personally see no use for c and k!!! Do you think I can start another alphabet revolutions?!?!? Great job, Beth Anderson.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank goodness for Ben and Noah! I took an old English class in college and trying to decipher what I was reading was horrible. Congrats, Beth and thank you for giving us a book like this!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m happy to learn more about this book, Vivian, and like you, I wonder where these great books were when I was a kid. No matter, they are here for our grandkids! Congratulations, Beth!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yay! I can’t wait to read this one! Fun! Great activity ideas! Thanks, Vivian!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. CAN’T WAIT TO READ IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Danielle Hammelef

    This book is going to be fun for me as a word lover. This is cool history to learn.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This looks great, Vivian! Putting it on hold 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Looks wonderful! Thanks for the post and congratulations! Requesting it at my library right now!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Congratulations Beth! I love books that bring history alive for youth! Must admit I didn’t know the story about Franklin and Webster. Sounds like a fun book!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Ohh, this sounds like such a fun book, especially since my father is English and continually adds /u/ to words 🙂 Looking forward to reading it!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I can’t believe this book wasn’t already on order at the San Francisco Public Library. I just sent them the info. I’m sure they’ll rectify the situation!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. There you are! I was looking froward to reading your review. This is a great book! Congrats Beth and thanks Vivian for fun crafts.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. cannot wait to read this book! On order for our library system… but if they don’t hurry up and get it on the shelf I may have to get my own copy!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. So looking forward to reading this – I love learning little-known stories about historical icons.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. This is a book that will appeal to all ages. Congratulations Beth!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Sounds like a great idea for a book. I’d read this to my class asap!


  17. I really can’t wait for this one. It makes you wonder what could have been for dreadful spellers like me.


  18. this is just the kind of story I love


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