An alphabet book with Christmas-themed words, celebrated with a mouse family.
Engelbreit’s signature artwork is the focus in this board book for young readers. Each letter has its own illustration populated by mice: mouse Santa, mice elves, and eager mice family members. While the letters in the alphabet provide the anchors for the text, the images have their own narrative thread, as readers see the mice preparing for the holiday. The level of detail in the illustrations is astounding and completely captivating even though the small trim of the format cramps the images. The mouse world is fully realized and meticulously drawn. There’s the face of a (presumably human-sized) wristwatch turned sideways on the shelf as a mouse-sized clock, the delicate knit pattern visible on the mother mouse’s sweater, and a child’s shoe refashioned into a sled. The book is full of these gems, not least of which is the mouse family’s adorable pet ladybug, present throughout. The ornate alphabet letter that accompanies each illustration has its own darling dress-up action, festooned with items that begin with the letter and not repeating what is featured in the main illustration. There is so much on each page that readers will snuggle in and linger, sparking a little bit of Christmas magic.
Rich illustrations that drive the narrative make this so much more than a simple alphabet book. (Board book. 1-3)