A trip to visit Zebra turns into a game of colliding creatures in this French book-and-toy import.
Young readers can play along, as the episode comes packaged in a slipcase box with eight thick, rounded, particle-board animal figures. Gorilla, who’s “bored, bored, bored,” decides to visit Zebra for a round of the titular diversion and is joined along the way by Elephant, Lion, Giraffe, and Rhino—the last offering a willing Crocodile to ferry everyone across the wide river. Unfortunately, in midriver the travelers (literally) run into Hippo. “BADABOOM / BADATHUMP!” All end up in a heap in front of Zebra…who thinks that game looks like even more fun than Badaboom Badabump. Deneux cheats a little, stretching Crocodile out in the illustration so that all the animals line up neatly on its back at once, which is not possible with the accompanying toys. Still, along with offering a basic lesson in Newtonian principles, the challenge of finding a way to stack the animals in a stable formation followed by the gratification of ramming them into Hippo and seeing them fly makes a pleasing experience for anyone who likes to bang things together.
Expect gleeful chortles from budding atom-smashers and collision-safety experts. (Board book/novelty. 1.5-3)