What About X? An Alphabet Adventure

Abrams Appleseed. Feb. 2021. 40p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781419740787.
PreS-Gr 1–The letter X and all of his classmates at Alphabet Academy are going camping, but X cannot figure out what special item to bring in this energetic picture book. While all of X’s friends are bringing items that start with the letter of their names—(A is bringing apples, B is bringing binoculars, and so on)— X’s xylophone is unfortunately broken. What else starts with an X? Wiseman’s brightly rendered digital illustrations on a white background are evocative of Keith Baker’s LMNO Peas or Adam Rex’s School’s First Day of School, and will engage new readers with delightful letter-specific details. His classmates appears to be wearing accessories themed to their letters: A is wearing an astronaut helmet, while H is hairy, and C is dressed like a cowgirl. Some of these are more successful than others. Ultimately, X’s friends assure him that “X marks the spot,” and that all he needs to bring is himself, and the class is on their way! This is a fun and simple alphabet-centered, highly alliterative text.
VERDICT Good-hearted and cheerful, this is not a first purchase, but larger collections will find space for one more entry in the ABC canon.

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