- Best Word Book Ever
name = Best Word Book Ever
image_caption =Cover of the 1963 edition of the book.
illustrator = Richard Scarry
cover_artist = Richard Scarry
language = English
publisher = Golden Press
pub_date = 1963
media_type = Print (
pages = 91 (1st edition)
Richard Scarry's Best Word Book Ever was published in 1963 and became a best-selling children's book. Scarry had been illustrating children's books since 1950, but this was his first as both author and illustrator and started him on the "Best Ever" series.The book contains over 1,400 labelled pictures and sold over seven million copies in 12 years. citeweb|url=http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/rscarry.htm|title=Richard Scarry (1919-1994)|date=2003|publisher=Pegasos|accessdate=2008-01-03] citeweb|url=http://www.carnegiemuseums.org/cmag/bk_issue/2002/mayjun/csc1.htm|title=Richard Scarry's Busytown|author=M. A.Jackson|date=May-June 2002|publisher=Carnegie Museums of Pittsburg (Carnegie Magazine)|accessdate=2008-01-03] In all, Scarry wrote and illustrated over 300 books and "Best Word Book Ever" is his most successful.Fact|date=January 2008The word book is designed to entertain children while teaching them words and numbers. It is divided into subjects on each pair of pages. Subjects range from sports to houses, with examples from all over the world. The pages have a small amount of text, which often challenge the reader to find something on the page. The characters are all anthropomorphic
animals, quite often cats, bears, rabbits and mice, but many other animals are also used. The art for "Best Word Book Ever" was originally pencil drawn, then later painted.Fact|date=January 2008
The book was first published in the United States in 1963, followed by a British edition published in 1964 by Paul Hamlyn and reprinted in 1965. The Best Word Book Ever has been reprinted and revised many times since. The book has been translated into a number of other languages, including a bilingual edition in English and Spanish citeweb|url=http://browse.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&EAN=9780873588737|title=Richard Scarry's Best Word Book Ever / El mejor libro de palabras de Richard Scarry|publisher=Barnes and Noble|accessdate=2008-01-03] and one in Ukrainian. citeweb|url=http://www.infoukes.com/scarry/index.php?app=home&lang=en|title=Ukrainain Adaptation of Richard Scarry's Best Word Book Ever|publisher=InfoUkes-Ukrainian Publications|accessdate=2008-01-03]
Editing the "Best Word Book Ever"
The British edition is slightly altered for the British market; for example, the front cover shows a thatched cottage instead of an American style barn, and the "When you grow up" pages features a British soldier instead of an American one.Fact|date=January 2008
By 1991 the book had been edited to remove some of what became perceived as stereotypical roles for females and to update terminology. citeweb|url=http://www.flickr.com/photos/kokogiak/sets/1425737|author=Kokogiak|title=The Best Word Book Ever, 1963 and 1991|pubisher=Flickr|accessdate=2008-01-03] At least 14 changes were made, including changing a male "policeman" to a female "police officer" on the front cover, and changing "handsome pilot" to "pilot" and "pretty stewardess" into "flight attendant."
The book was reduced in pages from 92 to 72 pages, removing such things as "In the Flower Garden."
Following his great success with "Best Word Book Ever", Richard Scarry went on to create a large number of other children's books in the same style with similar animals, a similar dominance of the art over the text and even similar names, including "Best First Book Ever", "Best Little Word Book Ever" and his last book "Richard Scarry's Biggest Word Book Ever." Various "Best Ever" books were adapted to video and a television series, "
The Busy World of Richard Scarry," ran on Nick Jr.from 1995 to 2000.citeweb|url=http://www.tv.com/the-busy-world-of-richard-scarry/show/2962/summary.html|title=The Busy World of Richard Scarry|accessdate=2008-01-03]
*Publisher: Golden Press, 1963, 91 pages, Hardcover (ASIN B000J07UG8)
*Publisher: Western Publishing Company, Inc., October 1963, Hardcover (ISBN 0307655105)
*Publisher: Paul Hamlyn, 1964, 91 Hardcover, British version
*Publisher: Golden Press, 1980, Hardcover, (ISBN 9780307155108, ISBN 0307155102)
*Publisher: Golden Books, 1999, 72 pages, Hardcover, Large format (ISBN 9780307155108)
*Publisher: Random House Children's Books (with Giant Little Golden Book), September 1999, Hardcover (ISBN 0307155102)
*Publisher: Luna Rising, September 2004, 64 pages, Hardcover, (Bilingual, English-Spanish) (ISBN 9780873588737)
* [http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/rscarry.htm Biography of Richard Scarry]
* [http://www.infoukes.com/scarry/index.php?app=home&lang=en InfoUkes-Ukrainian version]
* [http://www.flickr.com/photos/kokogiak/sets/1425737/ Flickr- Changes over the years ]
* [http://www.google.co.uk/products?hl=en&q=best+word+book+ever&um=1&ie=UTF-8 Google Products]
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