Friday, April 12, 2019

The Crab Alphabet Book

The Crab Alphabet Book 
by Jerry Pallotta; illus by Tom Leonard
32 pages; ages 3-7
Charlesbridge, 2019

themes: alphabet, arthropods, diversity

A is for Arrow Crab. This skinny creature with the arrow-shaped head and body is an ocean crab.

This book is filled with crabs: skinny crabs and fat crabs, red crabs and blue crabs. Some crabs are huge – measuring 13 feet from toe to toe – and others are tiny. There are fiddler crabs that don’t play the fiddle, and crabs that look like they’re wearing mittens.

They may look very different from each other, but all crabs have ten legs – even though the front two end in claws.

What I like love about this book: I like the note from the crabs at the beginning of the book: “We crabs are tired of books about cute penguins, proud tigers, colorful butterflies, and other favorite animals…”

I like the note from the crabs at the end of the book which explains that the horseshoe crab may have “crab” in its name, but it’s not a crab! “We didn’t want our own book because we’re selfish,” the crabs write. “We’re shellfish!”

And I really like the notes the crabs write throughout the book – tidbits of information about regeneration of lost limbs, molting, and blood color. Bluish-green, if you must know. Great illustrations paired with fun and breezy text makes you want to linger over each page.

Beyond the Book:

Crabs are crustaceans. They’re related to lobsters, shrimp, and barnacles. You can learn more at this website. 

Walk like a crab. You need to walk on your hands and feet, but not the way you think. Crab-walking improves your health and strength. Here’s how to do it.

Make a paper plate crab. You’ll find directions here.

Today we're joining other book bloggers over at STEM Friday, where you can discover other cool STEM books. And we're joining Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event where bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's websiteReview copy provided by the publisher.


  1. This sounds both funny and informative. Charlesbridge is finding some fabulous stories to publish!

  2. This sounds absolutely delightful. I'm glad you shared it!

  3. Wow! I didn't know there were enough different kind of crabs or crab facts to fill a whole alphabet!

    1. I know! I met many new crabs as I read this book.

  4. I HAVE to find this book. I love the idea of letter by the crabs. How ingenious.

  5. You find the coolest books. My grandson would LOVE IT! Didn't realize there could be so many different crabs.

  6. The Crab Alphabet book looks amazing! I am looking forward to this one coming to my library. Thanks.