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Agent A To Agent Z Hardcover – February 1, 2004


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Lexile Measure: 790L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books (February 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0439368820
  • ISBN-13: 978-0439368827
  • Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 8.8 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #820,006 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Can Agent A complete his mission and uncover a rogue spy? Find out, in this silly, spy-themed alphabet book by illustrator-author Andy Rash (The Robots Are Coming) as you walk through the alphabet one letter (and one secret agent) at a time.

Agent A receives an urgent mission from the boss: "Every spy who is official/ uses words with his initial./ But one spy is out of line./ I need to know his name by nine." So the faithful agent takes off, racing through the alphabet to find the troublemaker: "Agent B correctly chooses/ Blue and so the Bomb defuses"; "Agent C is Crawling up/ the window using suction Cups." Crossing suspects off his list, Agent A works his way through a goofy, bumbling crew of colleagues who wear all sorts of crazy gear to complete their missions: "Agent I is Incognito,/ posing as a large mosquito". All the stories check out, until Agent A makes a startling discovery that could get him kicked out of the agency (and make him miss the big Agent Dance!).

Rash keeps the pace fast and funny, drawing dynamic spreads that maintain the book's mock-serious, Get Smart tone while still providing plenty of colorful, comedic details, from surreptitiously poisoned martinis to a gadget-equipped circular agent bed. (Ages 4 to 8) --Paul Hughes

From School Library Journal

Grade 1-3--In a takeoff on Mission Impossible, cartoonist Rash sets up a clever plot for an alphabet book. The narrative begins before the title page when Agent A receives a message ordering him to find a bogus spy who does not use a word beginning with his or her initial. He sets off and makes his way through the list of agents, each of whom is described in a rhyming couplet ("Agent I is Incognito, posing as a large mosquito"). Some couplets scan better than others ("Agent C is Crawling up/the window using suction Cups"). "Agent N decodes a Note/to learn that it was one he wrote." "Agent W attacks/a spy she didn't know was Wax." However, the theme is fun and well executed. The humorous illustrations, drawn in ink and digitally colored, are filled with the stuff of spy thrillers: black backgrounds or frames, shadows, an overhead bulb casting a triangle of light in a dark office, and Agent A skulking around every corner. Small black smudges add texture. The spies themselves are especially ridiculous with their silly disguises, nutty kung-fu moves, and abundant mishaps. Youngsters may guess the surprise ending before this crazy caper concludes, but they'll definitely enjoy the mission.--Marianne Saccardi, Norwalk Community College, CT
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
5 star
75%
4 star
25%
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See all 8 customer reviews
It is a fabulous read aloud book.
Robin Crawford
The rhymes are funny and well thought out, and the illustrations have an amazing retro spy feel.
Amanda J. Henning
It is my own son's new favorite book.
Esme R. Codell

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Nomi D. Kleinman on February 10, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The images are fantastic and the agent rhymes are the perfect mix of humor and wit so both kids and adults will love this book. I loved turning each page to see what the next agent was up to! I'm buying this book for all my little cousins.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Shannon Greaves on September 30, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My boys received this book about 10 years ago (ages 5, 10). Now at ages 20 and 15, they can recite the book word-for-word, they read it so much. A quirky, funny, memorable book - that is even MORE fun when it's recited with a bad English accent!
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Format: Hardcover
I am *not* Andy Rash's cousin or any relation at all, but I *still* think his latest book is an absolute delight! I have a professional review posted at [...] but I wanted to say from a personal perspective, when I read this book aloud in the classroom, every turned page was met with laughter, groans of "cooool!" and plenty of "Wow!" The artwork is so hip and the rhymes are really creative. Even though the theme is action-packed, the level of violence stays PG. The spy dance party at the end complete with fedora-wearing record-scratching DJ was a HOOT! When I was done sharing the book with classes, boys dove after my copy like tigers on a t-bone. This book taps into what kids want to read here and now, with a finger on the pulse of the reluctant reader. It is my own son's new favorite book. If your family enjoys The Spy Kids movies, Rocky and Bullwinkle or any of the Pink Panther stuff, you've got to add this title to your shelves! I also love Andy Rash's collection of subversive verse _The Robots are Coming_, which has become one of our standard gifts for boys turning eight. Can't to see what this offbeat talent will offer up next!
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Format: Hardcover
I bought this book in New York City at the Scholastic store in Spring 2004. It is a fabulous read aloud book. I shared it with my own children, then aged 1, 3, 6. I have since purchased it for use in my first grade classroom. The rhymes are great and the illustrations striking. My children are experts at repeating the text "Agent K has learned Kung Fu and frequently kick off a shoe" and "Agent Y begins to wonder from his post and over yonder." (we always add a speech bubble -- Doe Doe Di Doe, Cute little Bunny Rabbit!) The vocabulary is inspiring and could serve as a spring board for upper elementary students to write/illustrate an A-Z book with a unique theme and specialized vocabulary.
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More About the Author

Andy Rash was born on a mountain top in Tennessee, educated in the swamps of Georgia and the canyons of New York, and lives with his family in Milwaukee. He has illustrated for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Time, Entertainment Weekly and The New Yorker. He writes and illustrates children's books.

Are You A Horse has been nominated for a Missouri Building Block Award, a Washington Children's choice Award, has been adapted to DVD by Nutmeg Media, and soon will be featured in an episode of BBC Bedtime Stories.

Agent A to Agent Z was awarded a Parent's Choice Silver Honor, an Amazon Editor's Choice Award, a Brown County Book Award (Indiana), a Starred Review in Publisher's Weekly and was nominated for a Washington Children's picture Book Award. It has been adapted by Peaceable Kingdom into a Game Time Activity Tote. It is currently in development for animated television.

Ten Little Zombies: A Love Story has been optioned for a short animated film, and Superhero School has been optioned for animated television as well!

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