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On Beyond Zebra!
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On Beyond Zebra!

4.05 of 5 stars 4.05  ·  rating details  ·  2,032 ratings  ·  97 reviews
If you think the alphabet stops with Z, you are wrong. So wrong. Leave it to Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell (with a little help from Dr. Seuss) to create an entirely new alphabet beginning with Z! This rhyming picture book introduces twenty new letters and the creatures that one can spell with them. Discover (and spell) such wonderfully Seussian creations as the Yuzz-a-m ...more
Hardcover, 64 pages
Published September 12th 1955 by Random House Books for Young Readers
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Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice SendakThe Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric CarleThe Giving Tree by Shel SilversteinGreen Eggs and Ham by Dr. SeussGoodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
Best Children's Books
455th out of 3,145 books — 4,697 voters
The Stranger by Albert CamusThe Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-ExupéryRabbit, Run by John UpdikeThe Military Support Group by Amanda SpringerAlice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass by Lewis Carroll
Stars and Stripes
17th out of 164 books — 26 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,840)
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Rob
As a kid I loved weird words and other linguistic hijinx, and so it's no surprise that On Beyond Zebra was on the short list of favorite Seuss books. After rereading it just now, I realized that it was special in one other way: perhaps more than any other of the master's works, it spurred me to creativity (just like Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell in the story!). Looking back with my jaded, myopic grown-up eye, I can see that the new letters beyond Z are simple amalgamations of ordinary Roman l ...more
Kathryn
After a short break, we are once again picking up from where we left off on our Dr. Seuss library marathon. This is a wonderful book to encourage an active imagination. My 4-year-old enjoyed it more than my 6-year-old, which is funny since he can not yet read as his brother does.

I do not remember reading this when I was a child but I know I would have loved it. It makes me think of the inital stirrings I felt when I first read Tolkien and the language he created.
Douglas Noblehorse
A classic for showing kids how to think beyond the normal...
Michelle McBeth
On the first page of this story, a boy has just recited his ABCs when another boy comes along and says, why stop there? He then proceeds to tell Conrad O'Dell all about of his made up letters that he uses to go beyond Z. He also has a made up thing that goes with each letter. Conrad O'Dell decides that he has indeed been missing out by stopping only at Z and begins to make up his own alphabet.

The illustrations are mostly red, black, white and blue, but are of the high quality expected from Dr. S
...more
Candace Ryan
Dr. Seuss proves he's the Einstein of kidlit with this book. It took a while for the world to "get" E=mc², blowing the roof off Newtonian physics. Dr. Seuss blows the roof off the alphabet and language itself with this book.

Cool kidlit scholar Philip Nel writes in Dr. Seuss: American Icon, "...On Beyond Zebra is Seuss's Finnegans Wake." 'Nuff said?
Yashira Marie
This book is really amazing... it inspires you to think outside the box and to not accept things just the way they are, but go beyond them, explore and wonder. I LOVE IT!
Kelly
I believe I had this memorized by the time I was three. When my little brother was old enough, I got to recite it to him. I didn't need the pages for the words, just the pictures.
Danno
Dr. Seuss will always be a classic and always a first choice for parents. His books range from better than most to amazing. Although this may not be his best work, its definitely stands up to other books we got at the library.

What I like about On Beyond Zebra! is the heat of what Seuss does: he creates new words and new creatures. My son and I laughed at the names and descriptions of these taxidermy nightmares anxiously flipping to the next page to find out what will be next.

Creating a new alp
...more
Josiah
When I think on the reasons why the works of Dr. Seuss have retained their freshness and relevance in the world of literature for so long, one of the foremost explanations that I come back to time and again is the unique energy with which their writing is infused. Every line, every page, every book is filled with a rare kind of zany energy that one doesn't often find in picture books of today, let alone in ones from the middle of the twentieth century. Dr. Seuss never strayed from the foundatio ...more
Cruth
Author / Illustrator: Dr Seuss
First Published: 1955 (renewed 1983)

It's Dr Seuss.

It's rhythmic, lyrical, fun to read. Bright and colourful. Absurd and enjoyable.

That's pretty much all you need to know.

But to fulfil the needs of a "review"...

In terms of child-appeal, the idea there might be more letters in the alphabet confused my rule-based daughter - she just isn't good at silly. But Dr Seuss' fun vignettes combining nonsense characters and nonsense words with nonsense tales tickled her. With a
...more
Sarah Sammis
On Beyond Zebra by Dr. Seuss is a book I somehow missed in my own childhood. I have memories of reading through stacks and stacks of Seuss books but somehow this one wasn't among them. I first heard of it through my son who read it at his school library. He has been raving about it since he read it and I finally found a copy at our local library so I could read it.

On Beyond Zebra is a playful book that takes a look at our alphabet and proposes twenty-one extra letters with explanations of how th
...more
Shelley
I love Dr. Seuss....I like that this one seems to say to kids that the alphabet isn't a set thing, but they are free to explore and imagine. We read it and then I had Ethan make up his own letter: draw and name it.
Nia King
What a way to play with words and encourage creativity. Who would image turning the alphabet backwards. This story challenges children to play with different sound, this can emerge literacy and aid in pronunciation.
Nickie
If there were more letters, think of all the things you could spell. A bit long winded, lost interest in a few places. You could have a create your own letter lesson with your kids.
Stacey
There are things beyond Z that most people don't know ....
As always, a fun "think outside of the box" story from one of the best.
Earl
The Good: I plan on reading all of Dr. Seuss' books this year as part of my reading challenge.
http://thechroniclesofachildrensbookw... There are a lot that I wasn't familiar with at all- On Beyond Zebra being one of them. I was pleasantly surprised that it was about the love of words and not staying within the confines of popular/normal boundaries.

The Bad: One of the reasons I thought I didn't like Dr. Seuss (as I mentioned in the post I shared above) was all the made up words. Unfortunately, th
...more
Catherine
Not one of Dr. Seuss's greatest hits. It's very similar to There's a Wocket in My Pocket!, with nonsense just for the sake of nonsense.

The premise is that an older boy is telling a younger boy just learning his letters that there are more exciting letters beyond Z. They all look like crazy combinations of letters already in the alphabet, and their pronunciation is given with letters of the alphabet, as are the words they're used to spell. Even my kindergartener noticed that.
Sham Issa
مضحك، ممتع، ومبدع. مواضيعه أكثر من مجرد قصة أطفال، رغم أنهم سيكونون الأكثر استفادة حتماً.
Hank
One of Seuss's best. My daughters loved it, every time I read it. And I read it to them many times.
Jeremy Dean
Confusing for children just learning the alphabet. Should be banned from pre-schools.
Tea
And this is why I make up my own words. Dr. Seuss encouraged it!
Denise
Dr. Seuss is big in our house at the moment, we are decorating out kitchen with Dr. Seuss My five year old gave this 4 starts because he really liked the zebra.
This book was fun to make us think outside the box, which honestly we do often with Dr. Seuss. On Beyond Zebra makes the reader, and listener take a road less traveled. Words are built on letters but what if we took new letters and made no words...we would surly go beyond Zebra!
Challenge to read at times with all the new words and lette
...more
Derrick
My new favorite Suess book!
Jill Collins
Another book surfaced from the depths of my bookcase. I can see my mother's preferences reflected the concept, the way it encourages the child to think of all the letters beyond after you've mastered A though Z. When I was a kid all her games were to stretch the imagination, to get you outside of the box. "How many ways can you gather a bouquet of flowers?" The sillier your answer, the better.

The "new" letters along with the creations are simply delightful. I'm glad I've held on to this book.
Stephanie Martin
Picture Book 7: Dr. Seuss is definitely my favorite children's author. I enjoy the rhyming and they are always fun to read. This book is good for children because it teaches them the alphabet without them even realizing it. This book makes learning fun and reading as well. I thought it was clever that at the end of the book he asked what this letter should be called, which really gets the audience/children involved. Also, the pictures like all dr.seuss books are great and all in all this book is ...more
Lisse
This is the last Seuss book I am reading to celebrate Dr. Seuess week. I really enjoyed Beyond the Zebra. It's a fun book about a boy who says that you must look further than the letter Z to spell the words of the creatures he sees. I like how Seuss makes up letters and their symbols and all the fun stories and creatures that go with them. This is one of my favorite Seuss books of the week; another show of how great of an imagination this man had and how outside the box he was able to think.
Sajjad Azim
Learned some new letters
Alisa Rootsaert
I thought this book was witty and creative. However, it did not really serve its purpose to educate kids about their alphabet. I always loved Dr. Suess and his non-sensical books, but I cannot confirm that I ever learnt anything from them. The lesson of the book or the aim of it was not to help kids learn their alphabet, but I suppose give a fun side to memorizing the alphabet. But in terms where kids can create their own non-sensical version of the alphabet.
Marguerite
Nov 07, 2008 Marguerite rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Marguerite by: Mom
One of my favorite Seuss books, though I don't think our children liked it so much. But I love to recite "Three-Seater Zatz-it Nose-Patting Extension." This book is a love letter to words, and is partly responsible for me becoming a word person:

"And FLOOB is for Floob-Boober-Bab-Boober-Bubs who bounce in the water like blubbery tubs. They're no good to eat. You can't cook 'em like steaks. But they're handy for crossing small oceans and lakes."
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Seuss Lovers: On Beyond Zebra! 1 1 Dec 06, 2012 06:48PM  
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Theodor Seuss Geisel was born 2 March 1904 in Springfield, MA. He graduated Dartmouth College in 1925, and proceeded on to Oxford University with the intent of acquiring a doctorate in literature. At Oxford he met Helen Palmer, who he wed in 1927. He returned from Europe in 1927, and began working for a magazine called Judge, the leading humor magazine in America at the time, submitting both carto ...more
More about Dr. Seuss...
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