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by Audrey Wood & illustrated by Bruce Wood

Age Range: 3 - 5

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-439-08069-X
Publisher: Blue Sky/Scholastic

The alphabet letters are stuck on Alphabet Island. “Oh, who knows what to do?” There’s no pageboy to pull the plug and solve the problem as in Wood’s King Bidgood’s in the Bathtub (1985). An adult reading to a child, however, might be tempted to pull the plug on the plodding story and concentrate solely on the vibrant, double-page spreads by Woods’s son. The story follows a cast of 3-D lower-case alphabet letters (plus their leader, Capital T for teacher) preparing to leave Alphabet Island to go to school. Little “i” loses her dot, setting up a slight mystery that sends the letters searching all over the island for it; it’s hiding somewhere in each illustration. The missing dot returns when she is about to be replaced, and the alphabet team climbs aboard a pencil to jet off to school, where they help a boy spell his name. The computer-generated illustrations far surpass the slight story, with jaunty letters in crayon-bright colors and an appealing Alphabet Island full of turquoise canals, palm trees, and brightly painted row houses. Illustrator Woods creatively varies the perspective with overhead views and flying pencils that seem ready to rocket right off the page. Preschoolers can learn the names of the letters as they peruse the fascinating art, created with 3-D modeling software. (Picture book. 3-5)