The Great Zoo Hullabaloo
New Frontier, 2017
32pp., hbk., RRP $A24.99
“When Jess and Jack open the gates to the zoo
It was strangely deserted. Nobody said BOO.”
So where have all the creatures gone? Because the more they look, the less they see – just trails of scats and feathers and tracks. Determined to find them they separate following the clues but as dusk falls and there is still no sign, Jess is getting concerned. Then comes the sound of music from the nearby bush and a huge flash of a flare splits the sky and Jack emerges. The animals are having a party but what are they celebrating?
A charming story told in rhyme which will enchant young listeners as they try to guess where the animals have gone, and once they’ve been discovered, predict what they are up to. Filled with movement and sound both words and pictures convey the fun and excitement of a party – just the feel of the word ‘hullabaloo’ on the tongue is fun. But being part of it is even more fun so be prepared for making music!
But there is also the opportunity for little ones to learn more about the creatures in the zoo – the fact that each has a different-shaped foot that makes a unique track starts the exploration on the endpapers, the references to the different feathers of the different birds and the introduction of the term “scats” and what they are and how they offer valuable clues about their producer all meld to make this an intriguing initiation into a more in-depth recognition of animals than just their shape and colour.