Come for a safari and explore five common animals of Africa’s savanna: lion, giraffe, elephant, hippopotamus, and zebra.
Each animal is featured on two double-page spreads in this informational board book, and the rhyming text, mostly one sentence per page, gives toddler-appropriate facts about that animal, though they are occasionally a little ambiguous. “Elephants are really smart, / with a super sense of smell. // They like to care for relatives / when they’re not feeling well.” The first page gives an introduction to the characteristics of the habitat, but the word “savanna” is not included in the book, and the only mention of Africa, where these animals live, is on the last page. The last page has one fun fact about each animal (“Each zebra’s stripes are slightly different, just like our fingerprints,” although all five zebras on another page look dramatically similarly striped) and a brief environmental plea to work together to help preserve habitat. Illustrations are colorful, bold, and geometric and really carry the book. The only child in the book is a brown-skinned, dark-haired child standing with the giraffe. The other two books in the series are similar. The Jungle Crew is set in the rainforest (that word appearing only on the last page); The Polar Pack includes both North and South Polar regions, and apart from the polar bear, does not specify in which polar region the penguin, walrus, reindeer, and snowy owl are found.
Despite the occasionally ambiguous text, a good, strikingly illustrated conversation starter about animals, their habitats, and our part in protecting these environments. (Board book. 2-5)