A Czech-born designer brews up an intriguing Halloween-y broth: When the teacher assigns making alphabet soup as homework, the new green students, twins Gurgla and Blog, rush home to get started--shadowed by classmate Zack, an ordinary boy who is curious about their mother, a witch. The hidden Zack is entranced to see the ingredients that go into the cauldron, yucky stuff like Ants, Bagworms, Dandruff, Old Olive Oil... But when the witch suggests wine for Y, Zack can't resist chiming in, realizing his mistake too late. He's chased, treed, tugged--and when the twins get Zack's pants but not Zack himself, his zipper makes the perfect final ingredient. Gabler's scribbled illustrations brim with energy; the laid-back teacher, who has a uniquely sensible response to offbeat students, is a nice touch. A fine debut, sure to delight young readers.