Danylyshyn and Lomp use rhyming verse, wordplay, and the mnemonic device of associating a word with a silly, memorable picture to introduce and help children remember the names of groups of animals.
“A group of rhinos is called a CRASH, / which happens sometimes in a flash. / Honking their horns, always hurrying to arrive, / with such poor eyesight they really shouldn’t drive.” A four-way intersection on the African savanna finds 10 dismayed or angry rhinos stranded, all involved in some sort of traffic altercation and most wearing glasses. The run of salmon all sport numbered race bibs on their bellies, the band of gorillas plays to an adoring crowd, and the committee of vultures surrounds a boardroom table, wearing ties and trying to decide between dinner and snacks. Not all of Lomp’s digital illustrations are as memorable as these, though. The pride of lions is pictured in a beauty salon, the gaze of raccoons shows a group of raccoons robbing the pies from a windowsill, their eyes blank and staring, and the zeal of zebras are depicted as spies. The verse is also weak in both rhythm and rhyme, many times not scanning well when read aloud.
Betsy R. Rosenthal’s An Ambush of Tigers, illustrated by Jago (2015), is a much better—and more memorable—choice than this effort. (Picture book. 4-8)