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FRAIDYZOO by Thyra Heder Kirkus Star

FRAIDYZOO

By Thyra Heder (Author) , Thyra Heder (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Nov. 5th, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-4197-0776-6
Publisher: Abrams

What kid is afraid of going to the zoo? Little T, that’s who.

To find out exactly which animal Little T is so afraid of, her parents and older sister strike poses with household props and act out the unnamed, alphabetic animals A to Z. Little T laughs and giggles at their mimicking antics, saying “No” to each of the monkeyshines. Of course she winds up joining in the fun, and the family makes it to the zoo. The surprise ending is a hoot and will have readers laughing out loud. The witty watercolor-and-ink illustrations invent humorous clues: Dad mimes “alligator” with his arms; big sister decorates an umbrella with bubble wrap and pink streamers to make a “jellyfish.” Nuanced details add whimsy, such as a black-and-white cat that meanders in and out of the scenes. Though the animals are never labeled in the story, the rear endpapers present pictures of each creature pinned to a bulletin board. Q stands for Quetzal; N for Narwhal; U for Unicorn; X and Y for Xantis Yak; V for Vampire Bat.

WARNING: Expect riotous buffoonery after reading this clever and original alphabet story, as kids will definitely want to “parrot” the examples. (Picture book. 4-8)