Little, Brown Books for Young Readers: Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer

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Z Is for Moose

This theatrical comedy from Kelly Bingham (Shark Girl) and Caldecott Medalist Paul O. Zelinsky (Toys Come Home) sets a new standard for the alphabet book. Apple takes the stage first ("A is for Apple"), and referee Zebra checks Apple off his list. Ball lays aside its stuffed bear to steal the spotlight, followed by a coquettish Cat. But what's this? "D is for Moose?" "Moose does not start with D. You are on the wrong page," Zebra admonishes.

Young letter-learners will adore knowing more than Moose does, as he steps on Hat, shouting, "Is it my turn yet?" then wises up during Lollipop's turn ("Here it comes!"). "M is for..." Not Moose! "Wait! No! That was supposed to be me! Moose! With an M!" Moose erupts in a terrible twos–type tantrum. Zelinsky goes to town, breaking the frames and disrupting the established type treatment as Zebra tries to protect everything in Moose's path.

Author and artist convey emotional honesty in this group dynamic. Moose is the overeager kid that you don't want on your team. But then, like Zebra, you feel horrible that you left him out. Happily, every cast member appears on the final page, just like a curtain call. Encore! --Jennifer M. Brown, children's editor, Shelf Awareness