Audrey Wood writes delightful stories while her husband Don or her son Bruce illustrates them. Styles vary when the Wood family is at work, and kids will find either a whimsical tale about being as quick as crickets or quirky tales that teach. Alphabet Mystery is one of the latter takes on a picture book, with a unique approach toward the illustrations by Bruce Wood combined with a cute story by Audrey Wood.
Fans of Alphabet Adventure will have a great time with this next book (though readers don’t necessarily have to read one to enjoy the other!). While most books that showcase the alphabet merely teach the letters from start to finish, the Woods make the story about the letters themselves and incorporate words that utilize them in fun ways. Alphabet Mystery stars the lowercase letter x. In their interesting alphabet world, the little x feels left out. He hardly ever seems to be used for anything. So in his sadness, he leaves all the other letters and disappears. But the other letters need him!
They search every nook and cranny for the little x and eventually find him playing the xylophone under the tutelage of the strange Master, capital M. Little x sees his friends’ concern and with a quick plan, escapes with them. He then finds out that he’s needed to make Mom’s birthday cake special because only x means kisses!
The childrens books by the Wood family are always a treat because you never know quite what to expect. Not only does this book teach the alphabet, it does it in a unique way by throwing the entire alphabet into a bit of an adventure, giving it multiple uses over many years. Bruce Wood’s computer graphic-style illustrations give it a dazzling appearance with bright colors and a strange yet beautiful tropical setting where the letters live.
Infants and older children will have a great time with Alphabet Mystery, so be prepared for kids to request this book rather often when story time comes around. Luckily it comes in hardcover, so it will have a much longer shelf life.