The Big Letter Hunt, published by Tower Block Books, is an alphabet picture book that takes its readers, young and old, on a tour of East London to find giant letters hidden amongst the buildings, architectural details and streets of London’s East End. The architectural treasure hunt wends its way through the Barbican, the City, Spitalfields and Whitechapel and features landmark buildings such as the Gasworks on the Regent’s canal, as well as local primary schools, blocks of flats and a library.
Some letters are easy to spot; others need a closer look. The Big Letter Hunt is a book for children and everyone else who likes buildings, typography and the East End.
The idea for this book came to us on one of our favourite walks along the Regent’s Canal with two two-year-olds who were just starting to recognise the letters of the alphabet. One day the gabled roofs of an industrial building were identified as ‘M’s. The children were ecstatic with their find, and so were we. So we continued to play this game of hunting for letters on our explorations of the neighbourhood.
”It was on these outings – into territory we thought we knew – that we discovered some lesser-known places and all sorts of interesting details amongst the buildings all around us. We walked, talked, took pictures and, most of all, looked, and looked again, finding many, many letters in the process. The ones that made it into The Big Letter Hunt are our favourites.” Rute Nieto Ferreira & Amandine Alessandra
Published by Tower Block Books, The Big Letter Hunt is a very local project: it was devised, designed and handmade in the East End of London.
The book is 60 pages of two-colour risograph prints in soy-based inks on FSC paper. Authors Rute and Amandine also live in London E2.
About Tower Block Books
Tower Block Books is an independent publishing house set up in 2014 by Amandine Alessandra and Rute Nieto Ferreira in East London. The Big Letter Hunt — in the East End of London, supported by Hato Press, is their first book.
About the authors
Amandine Alessandra is a graphic designer based in London. Her playful installation and performance-based 3D typographic work has featured in numerous books. She likes to think of typography as a way to transform the message into a readable experience. Amandine lives with her family in Bethnal Green. www.amandinealessandra.com
Rute Nieto Ferreira is an architect and lecturer. She has worked on a number of projects across London, many of which are buildings for children. She is interested in getting young people to participate and engage with architecture, cities and play. Rute lives in Bethnal Green with her partner and twin daughters. www.nietoferreira.co.uk