Wonderlicious, The Enchanting Wonderland Bakery Adventure
By Allyson Ames and Sondra Ames
Illustrated by David Anderson
The book can be purchased seperately or with an animated Allyson Bear by Gund® which reads the story, word for word.
Although I normally stick to reviews of books only, in this instance I had to branch out because to talk about the book without giving a mention to the bear would simply be a disservice to the concept. In fact, I'm even going to say a few words about the packaging. As most parents know to their chagrin, most items for children come in packages that by the time you open them, the box is destroyed due to tape and twist-ties galore. I realize that the intent is to keep the product safe, but sometimes I think a masters degree in opening packages is required to figure out how to take the item out of the package, and all the while your child is cycling toward complete meltdown because they can't have the item NOW! Well, set your minds at rest. This packaging is simple to open. Pull out the top tab and lift the first flap, then the second flap, pull out the second tab and repeat with the remaining flaps and you have instantaneous access to both the book and the bear. Everyone breathes a sigh of relief and your child will be delightedly listening to the story in moments.
The book is hardbound with a dust jacket that has iridescent sparkles on the word Wonderlicious. The illustrations that accompany the story are truly enchanting, with lots of vibrant color and activity on each page. The story is about Allyson herself and her dream from childhood of having her own bakery so she could create yummy treats for everyone. The story depicts Allyson as a child sneaking downstairs to bake while her parents slept because her passion for baking was so great. Then later she works with her friends to start the Wonderland Bakery. The story is meant to encourage youngsters to go after their passions and realize their dreams.
The Allyson Bear is charming and entrancing to any small child who sees it in action. I had the opportunity to see the bear and to watch the reaction of several children to it during a book festival I participated in. The children flocked to the booth with the bear. One little girl was so pleased with the bear, she turned around to tell me, a total stranger, "It reads every word!" and excitedly followed along with the story. Children are drawn to both the book and the bear and older siblings rejoice because it keeps the younger ones quiet and enthralled.
I would like to see more Allyson Wonderland books that go beyond the story of how the bakery got started and move more into the fiction realm of adventures in the bakery itself. A potential story of The Cupcake Caper comes to mind, and I can already visualize cupcakes sneaking through the bakery at night.
Allyson Ames is on AuthorsDen.
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