Written and Illustrated by Chris Van Allsburg
Houghton Mifflin, 1987
The W was oddly warped
The alphabet theme: The letters of the alphabet are each damaged in some way (that coincidentally corresponds with their letter)
Okay, so as I mentioned yesterday, we’re finished with the alphabet with a couple days to spare, so we’re filling those days with a couple of bonus books that I found after I had already chosen my 26 books (but somehow couldn’t stop looking at alphabet books). Our first bonus book is billed as a play in 26 acts and each ‘act’ presents a beautifully drawn letter on stage, with a particular problem affecting it. On the back of each picture page is a simple description of what’s going on with that letter. This gives you a chance to look at the picture and guess what’s going on before turning the page to find out.
Author and illustrator Chris Van Allsburg is best known for his books that have been made into movies, like The Polar Express, Jumanji and Zathura, all books that feature beautiful artwork. Although the pictures in this book are all presented in grayscale, the realism in each picture is what makes this book stand out. Mr. Van Allsburg is a master of texture and shading and it certainly shows here.
The X Factor: The X was carefully X-rayed. Not only is this not damaging, but the X-ray allows us to see that his bones are all intact. (I never knew X had bones, so I guess you learn something new every day.)