From School Library Journal
Starred Review. Kindergarten-Grade 5—A love letter to Broadway written with genuine warmth and professional-theater knowledge, this alphabet book features crisp, retro-style cartoon characters confidently racing about onstage and behind the scenes. Pleasantly busy pages capture the excitement of live theater and offer multiple entries for each letter. For example, "A" is for "audition," "actor," "audience," and "applause." "S" stands for "stage," "scenery," "set," and "script." Multiple sidebars offer further kid-friendly definitions. Plenty of star power is lent with quotes from luminaries such as Whoopi Goldberg, Liza Minelli, Steven Sondheim, Bernadette Peters, Carol Channing, and Kevin Kline. A CD single written by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty performed by Mitchell is also included. A must for all collections, this book will be treasured by theater aficionados for years to come.—Madigan McGillicuddy, Los Angeles Public Library
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With a dazzling cover, high-interest topic, and involvement by acclaimed performer Brian Stokes Mitchell (he wrote the introduction and afterword as well as performing on the included CD), this has the promise of being a showstopper, though it doesn’t totally deliver. The attractive design, A–Z format, and splashy computer-generated full-page illustrations will certainly appeal to many. Theater terms for each letter of the alphabet are given brief descriptions: audition, actor, box office, understudy, etc. (only two are specific to New York’s Broadway). Some letters are given double-page spreads along with several related terms, while others are relegated to one page and one term only. Most pages feature a quote from professionals involved in the industry. The brightly colored illustrations emulate collages yet still feel somewhat flat. This title could be used as a teaser to lead children to more practical books, such as Directing (2009) by Bethany Bezdecheck. Grades 3-6. --Randall Enos