Here’s another ABC devoted to “Things That Go.”
What gives this transportation alphabet a leg up are the animal characters that act out the scenes. Many of the vehicles that represent the letters are familiar, such as an airplane, a bus, a helicopter, a Jeep, and a limo. Others are more unexpected: dog sled, gondola, “EMS Truck,” quad bike, unicycle, “eXpress Train,” and zeppelin. The rhythmic, rhyming text is related in first-person voice by each of the vehicles highlighted, while a cast of (mostly) animals rides along. Though not a seek-and-find book, per se, details add additional items coordinated to the letters to look for. A parrot drives a police car as a panda holds a pencil and a pad of paper, for example. On the spread featuring the letters M and N, a mustachioed (and helmeted) mouse rides a motorcycle with a map sticking out of its back pocket, while a narwhal, newt, and, possibly, nuthatch ride a narrowboat. (Unfortunately, there is no legend in the back to identify objects and characters, so the little brown bird in the narrowboat may have caregivers looking through their field guides or just giving up.) It’s the interactions among the cast of animals that generate the fun in the full-spread illustrations.
There are lots of vehicle-themed alphabet books, but very few are as all-inclusive as this one is. Despite the one flaw, this book soars. (Picture book. 4-7)