Book 24: Animalia, by Graeme Base, published by Harry N. Adams, Inc., Publishers, New York 1986. Toddler to early elementary.
This is one of those children's books that I bought long before I had a child. Pretty much as soon as I spied it in the library I knew I had to have it. It's a great book that works on so many levels. For one thing, it's gorgeous. It is hard not to admire the splendid illustrations, and it's even harder to put the book down. Then there is the wonderful, witty alliteration (yeah, I did that on purpose). But it is so clever and unexpected. This is not your standard alphabet book.
This book is a great read-aloud for story time with toddlers and preschoolers. School-age children to adults will enjoy hunting for objects beginning with the featured letter on each illustrated page -- kind of like an early I Spy book, only you have to identify the objects, not just find them.
Graeme Base spend three years working on this book and was a very young man when he did it. Not a second of his time was wasted.