Ant and Bee
The Ant and Bee stories are a collection of small-format hardback books written by Angela Banner.
The first volume was published in the United Kingdom in 1950 and the last in 1972 by Edmund Ward Limited, later Kaye & Ward. At least some volumes were published in the United States by Franklin Watts Inc. The books were reprinted by Trafalgar Square Publishing in the late 1980s and early 1990s. New editions of certain volumes were published in 2013 by Egmont UK Limited.
Angela Banner wrote all the books in the series and also illustrated the last four. Earlier volumes were illustrated by Bryan Ward, but the 2013 editions of these volumes feature illustrations by the author.
Angela Banner began writing the books in order to teach her son how to read. Simple three- and four-letter words occur repeatedly and are printed in red type for children to read out while a parent reads the rest. The books also teach children about the alphabet, numbers, shapes, colours, countries of the world and calendar and clock reading. Each so-called alphabetical story emphasizes words beginning with consecutive letters of the alphabet, e.g., arrow, bread, chair and so on.
The principal characters are the good friends Ant (the naughtier and more adventurous half of the duo) and Bee (fussier and more sensible). Other regular characters are Kind Dog and his master, the Zoo Man.
The series comprises thirteen volumes, listed below with the book number that was printed on the cover on some UK editions.
Book 1. Ant and Bee and the ABC
Book 2. Ant and Bee, An Alphabetical Story for Tiny Tots
Book 3. More Ant and Bee, Another Alphabetical Story for Tiny Tots
Book 4. One, Two, Three with Ant and Bee, A Counting Story
Book 5. Around the World with Ant and Bee (about travel)
Book 6. More and More Ant and Bee, Another Alphabetical Story
Book 7. Ant and Bee and the Rainbow, A Story About Colours
Book 8. Ant and Bee and Kind Dog, An Alphabetical Story
Book 9. Happy Birthday with Ant and Bee (about the days of the week)
Book 10. Ant and Bee Time (about clock reading)
Book 11. Ant and Bee and the Secret (about school)
Book 12. Ant and Bee and the Doctor (about illness)
Book 13. Ant and Bee Go Shopping (about shapes)