Alfie the Apostrophe


Alfie the Apostrophe is nervous. Can he make it into the punctuation-mark talent show? There’s plenty of competition. Question marks tell riddles; exclamation points do cheerleading routines. And it looks as if the director, Bud Asterisk, has mistaken Alfie for a comma! Will all of Alfie’s practice pay off?

  • 32 Pages
  • 10.75" x 8.50"
  • 9780807502563
  • March 2010

Buy from Albert Whitman


  • Donohue confines the contending punctuation to common uses only, but tucks in some wordplay (Hiram the shy hyphen was ‘probably wishing he could dash away’) and Adinolfi’s brightly colored figures, though bearing smiling faces, actively posed limbs and the occasional item of dress, are still instantly recognizable. Donohue earns high marks for this lively debut.

    - Kirkus Reviews

  • Alfie and other quirky little figures represent the contestants in the puncuation-mark talent show: periods and hyphens, commas, asterisks, and parentheses. They all do their things, including telling jokes and riddles (question marks) and cheerleading (exclamation points). Alfie, who has butterflies about performing onstage, does magic tricks, turning two words into contractions and demonstrating the use of the possessive. He brings down the house and is declared ‘the show’s shining star.’ Fanciful cartoon drawings capture the whimsy of this original, instructional story.

    - School Library Journal

  • Donohue takes a basic plot and embellishes it with sly bits of punctuation-mark-based humor and even a bit of ancient history (the etymology of the word apostrophe). The eye-catching mixed-media illustrations feature bright, bold shapes and demonstrate a certain verve reminiscent of children’s own artwork. Teachers will be quick to see classroom potential in this picture book, with its uncommon subject and energetic presentation.

    - Booklist


Common Core

RL.2.1,2,3,4,5,6,7,10 RL.3.1,2,3,4,7,9,10 L.3.2


  • Accelerated Reader Points: 0.50
  • ATOS Level: 3.20