As a resident blogger and reviewer ~ This review and giveaway is being hosted at A Nation of Moms!
Noah is now closing in on three years old.....and time is flying! Developing by leaps and bounds each and every day, he loves to learn and is the stereotypical "sponge," soaking up everything around him.
Noah loves his letters and numbers ~ he loves to read and to have book time on a daily basis.
We were very excited to receive Where is Ziggy? from the acclaimed Alphabetown USA series to read and review. Although geared for children 2-6, even Amelia enjoyed the lively illustrations and large letters on the page.
Alphabetown USA is a fun and interactive series of children’s books teaching letter recognition, word formation and various life lessons. Current offerings include several book titles:
- Where is Ziggy?
- Hannah’s Homework
- Catena Goes Camping
- Madison’s Magical Adventures (This Summer)
- The Vowel Gang Takes a Trip (Release Date TBD)
Other exciting series that are in development are:
The authors of Alphabetown USA are Ryan & Nicole Mayer and are both graduates of Rutgers University. Nicole has a background in psychology and education, and Ryan is a former law enforcement officer. The Mayers have four children, Alex (17), Hannah (9), Madison (7) and Ava (6). The books are illustrated by Russ Simmons, a Creative Director and fine artist whose works can be found in several South Jersey Shore art galleries.
My kids absolutely loved this book! The search for the missing "Z" is a very clever and fun story that Noah truly enjoyed. Amelia, as I mentioned before, only being just shy of a year old, loved the vivid colors and amusing illustrations.
Another great feature of this book, is that after the story is over, there are some short games in the back of the book, including a matching word game with the letter Z, a search and find with the letter Z, and a "what is different" page as well. Also included, is a neat activity CD.
There are two important differences which separates the Alphabetown USA series from other children’s books. First, the books spring from the minds and imagination of the Mayer children. Taking an initial idea and developing a fun story adventure with a strong educational focus on teaching letters and words, the books are always centered on the introduction of everyday situations that will instill this kind of knowledge for their young readers. For example, Ziggy teaches teamwork, Catena shows the importance of being prepared.
A major selling point for me on this series of books, is that a portion of the proceeds from the sale of each Alphabetown book is donated to specified charities. The partner charity for Where is Ziggy? is Alex’s Lemonade Stand, for Hannah’s Homework the partner charity is Ronald McDonald House and for Catena Goes Camping, Miracle Flights for Kids.
A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE CHARITY
Since this review was specifically on the Where is Ziggy? book, I will delve a bit into this specific charity partner. A portion of the proceeds from the purchase of the Alphabetown USA Where is Ziggy? book will be donated to the charity, Alex’s Lemonade Stand: Fighting Childhood Cancer One Cup at a Time. Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF) emerged from the front yard lemonade stand of cancer patient Alexandra “Alex” Scott (1996-2004). In 2000, 4-year-old Alex announced that she wanted to hold a lemonade stand to raise money to help find a cure for all children with cancer. Since Alex held that first stand, the Foundation bearing her name has evolved into a national fundraising movement, complete with thousands of supporters across the country carrying on her legacy of hope.
Where is Ziggy? from the Alphabetown collection received Honorable Mention at the 2008 NYC Book Festival for Best Children’s Book.
BUY IT! Where's Ziggy? and the rest of the Alphabetown USA books are available for purchase online, on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and select Barnes & Noble and Brilliant Sky retail stores. Each book has a recommended retail of $14.95. An introductory price special (of $10 per book and $25 if all three book titles are purchased) is offered on Alphabetownusa and on Amazon.
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