The alphabet letters are stuck on Alphabet Island "Oh, who knows what to do?" There's no pageboy to pull the plug and solve the problem in Wood's King Bidgood's in the Bathtub (1985). An adult reading to a child, however, might be tempted to pull the plug on the plodding story and concentrated solely on the vibrant, double-page spread by Wood's son. The story follows a cast of 3-D lower-case alphabet letters (plus their leader, Capital T for teacher) preparing to leave Alphabet Island to go to school. Little "i" loses her dot, setting up a slight mystery that sends the letters all over the island for it; it's hiding somewhere in each illustration. The missing dot returns when she is about to be replaced, and the alphabet team climbs aboard a pencil to jet off to school, where they help a boy spell his name. The computer-generated illustrations far surpass the slight story, with jaunty letters in crayon-bright colors and an appealing Alphabet Island full of turquoise canals, palm trees, and brightly painted row houses. Illustrator Wood creatively varies the perspective with overhead views and flying pencils that seem to rocket right off the page. Preschoolers can learn the names of the letters as they peruse the fascinating are, created with 3-D modeling software.
---Kirkus Reviews, July 1st 2001
The 26 lowercase letters have worked hard all summer under the tutelage of their teacher, Capital T. At last they are ready to leave Alphabet Island to help a child learn his ABCs. But before they depart, Little i falls into the canal and loses her dot. Consternation and confusion ensue, for clearly the letters can't go to school if Little i has no dot! Fortunately, Capital I joins the search and formulates a clever plan that saves the day. Joyfully the little letters hop aboard a yellow pencil and fly off to school to form their first word, bringing the story to a satisfying conclusion. This unusual alphabet book boasts not only a clever, original, and engaging story but also lavish, computer-generated pictures by the author's son. His Alphabet Island has the hot colors and lush tropical look of Miami Beach, and his double-page spreads are positively cinematic, with wide-screen scope and inventive use of perspective. Best of all, Wood manages to invest his three-dimensional letters with individual personalities that kids will find irresistible. -Michael Cart
--Booklist, September 1st 2001
In this cleverly conceived and dramatically executed story, the small letters of Charley's Alphabet are ready to graduate to their real task, which is to help the child learn his ABCs. Unfortunately, an accident that leaves little "i" missing its dot threatens to derail the mission. Capital "I" saves the day with a clever plan and all is well for the little alphabet and Charley. There are many crafty elements to this clever story. After little "i" is rescued, the other letters are so excited that they line up in the wrong order and some are upside down or backwards. Observant youngsters will spy little "'i's" dot following it. The glossy illustrations are computer generated. Highlights, textures, and shadows are extremely successful using this medium and add great interest. Each page glows with jewel tones and is a feast for the eye. Children who are mastering the alphabet will be fascinated by this book, not only because of the letters but also in the suggestion that the alphabet can be theirs.
---School LibraryJournal, September 2001