Reading a big stack of books all with the same theme is something we really like. My son retains more of the stories when they all deal with the same subjects and seems to enjoy it more too! Here are some Zoo books we have read recently and enjoyed.
Welcome To The Zoo by Alison Jay is one of those books that you find something new to look for in the illustrations every time you open it. The book has no text, it's a book of illustrations that are so filled with detail that your child will adore it. The zoo in this book is missing something, cages! Many of the animals and people show up in a number of pages which helps the imaginative child make their own plot to this awesome book. The last page offers up things for you to find like the zoo keeper who is chasing after an ostrich, count the penguins and more.
The Great Escape from City Zoo by Tohby Riddle made me laugh hysterically. The humor was way over my 2 year old's head but he still enjoyed the book even if he didn't get it. The story is a funny tale about 4 animals who bust out of the zoo and live life on the outside as fugitives. I loved when the illustrations were references to pop culture - there is one of the fugitive animals crossing the street like the Abbey Road album cover, another that channels Edward Hopper's Nighthawks and more. I loved this book and I think it's great when a children's book can speak to the children and parents. We spend a lot of time reading to our kids and it's nice to have a book like this in the mix.
Good Night Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann is my son's pick of the lot.He loves this book and has since he was a young infant. This book has very little text but it doesn't need much. The sneaky little gorilla is setting free all the animals as the zoo keeper is saying good night to them. The free animals follow the zoo keeper home and into his bedroom. His wife wakes and marches them all back to the zoo, but the sneaky gorilla and little mouse aren't down with that. I love the parallels between the animals climbing into bed with the zoo keeper and his wife and my little man who much like the little gorilla in the book finds a way into my bed.
Two At The Zoo by Danna Smith is another zoo book worth a look. It's a counting book with fun rhymes but more than that it captures a little boy's fun day out with his grandpa. We follow them through the zoo counting animals from 1-10. I loved the illustrations by Valeria Petrone they capture the special relationship between a little boy and his grandfather perfectly. My son loved this book and has asked for it as a bedtime story so much we had to renew it from our library!
Do you have a favorite zoo book?