An ABC Escapade through Egypt

Children's Books, Middle Grade, Travel

By Bernadette Simpson

Publisher : Bernadette Simpson

ABOUT Bernadette Simpson

Bernadette Simpson


“Discover some of the many wonders of Egypt on this alphabetical escapade – foods like mangoes and konafa, animals such as foxes and jerboas, and places like the Red Sea and Zamalek. At each letter of the alphabet, stop to explore fun alliterative phrases, colorful photographs, and interesting facts. Read through the letters in order, or flip through the pages until one catches your eye. You may choose to read only the phrases at the top of each page or find out more by reading the detailed paragraphs. You are the captain of this journey so how you travel is up to you!”

I was always an avid reader and book-lover, but it was through my graduate studies that I truly realized the importance of children's literature – and the importance and effectiveness of teaching language to children using books with content familiar to the readers. I had few of those books available to me as a teacher in Cairo. I always remember trying to teach a third grade class how to play baseball just so they could understand and enjoy a story from our textbook. As I learned in my university courses and read story after story with my students, I was inspired by these young readers who willingly listened to, learned from, and even delighted in stories about snow, Thanksgiving, armadillos, enchiladas, and backyards. Not once did we read about Ramadan or sporting clubs or bowls of steaming lentil soup. And yet my students always asked for another book. Slowly, ideas for books written specifically for my Egyptian students began bubbling in my brain...and eventually started to find their way to paper, not only to entertain and educate my local students, but students around the world!

One not only reads but views Bernadette Simpson's An ABC Escapade Through Egypt. Filled with beautiful photographs of Egypt's rich culture, the book reads like a children's version of The Amazing Race. Using the alphabet and alliteration as the backbone driving the various excursions through this amazing country, Simpson introduces the reader to the food, entertainment, history, culture, wildlife, transportation, and other facets of Egyptian life. There is even a recipe for kids to make doe-ah (don't know what this is - pick up the book!). 

Want to learn more about a Camel's hump? What about the many uses of date palm trees? Learn about the many types mangos and what a prickly pear is. Are hieroglyphics more your interest? Well it's all here. 

Don't let the title fool you. This is not a preschool letter learning book for pre-school children, though they are sure to enjoy the wonderful pictures. This is a thoughtful, informative journey for 9-12 year olds which can be fully appreciated by adults as well. Certainly, Bernadette's rich background, having lived all over the world and now residing in the small town of Dahab in South Sinai, has provided her the sensitivity to experience and convey the wonders of Egypt. 

Todd A. Fonesca, author of The Time Cavern

As an elementary school teacher in the U.S. with an Egyptian background, I have waited a long time for a high-quality book such as An ABC Escapade through Egypt to teach my students about Modern Egypt. A great deal of literature is available about Ancient Egypt, and many students only understand Egypt in terms of pharaohs and pyramids. Information students have received about Egypt in the present day is typically from the media, with a focus on religion, politics, and conflict. This book serves as an educational tool to help children understand Egypt as a modern country with unique beauty and a rich culture. An ABC Escapade through Egypt has helped to fill a void in my classroom library. In addition, Bernadette Simpson's accompanying website is amazingly comprehensive and offers even more tools to explore Egypt. Meaningful educational opportunities are endless.

AJM, review on

This is a beautiful book! The pictures are gorgeous, and the text is just wonderful! Children of all ages will enjoy this. Younger children will appreciate the colorful photographs while teaching them the ABC's. Older children will love that the text is not too "textbook"--it's actually fun to read! And even adults will probably learn more about modern Egypt than they have ever learned before!

J. Wilberding, review on