|Title||:||Dear Zoo: Noisy Book|
|Number of Pages||:||24 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Dear Zoo: Noisy Book Reviews
“Dear Zoo” was written as a lift-the-flap board book in 1982, by the Scottish author, Rod Campbell. It is his most famous work, and thirty-five years later, it is still tremendously popular among the under fives in Great Britain, and has been translated into more than a dozen different languages.This review is for Dear Zoo: Noisy Book, which I think is the best of all the many versions and formats. It begins:“I wrote to the zoo to send me a pet. They sent me an …”and just as in the original book, the opposite page shows a mysterious “something”, hidden in a crate.Lift the flap, and we see … an elephant! And the words:“He was too big! I sent him back.”But this book has a delightful extra feature. It is a “noisy” book! And I can assure you (because I’ve done this myself) that if you accidentally sit on it, you will find that it might trumpet at you, or chatter like a monkey, or even (and this is a bit scary if you’re not expecting it!) even hiss like a snake!The sounds are operated by a series of 8 colour-coded buttons, each with a picture of the appropriate animal. A simple instruction to press the button is underneath the main text each time. The ladder of buttons is set into a raised platform down the right hand side of the book. It stands proud throughout the read as the pages are turned, and lies flush with the padded cover when the book is closed.The story goes through seven animals in turn. After the elephant comes a giraffe (“press the giraffe button to hear the giraffe munching”) who was “too tall”. The lion was too fierce, the camel too grumpy, the snake too scary, the monkey too naughty, the frog too jumpy … Each time the reason for returning the animal is different, and the words of the instruction are also slightly different (eg. “grumpy” and “grumbling”; “jumpy” and “croaking”. The buttons are not in the same order as the pictures in the book either, so the child has to think, and look carefully to choose the right one.The final picture is a lovely surprise, as the zoo thought very hard and:“sent me a …” and in the container is hidden a (view spoiler)[puppy, who of course gives a yippy bark! (hide spoiler)].“He was perfect! I kept him.”There are two more pages reprising the information, with a simple question about each pictured animal, and ending enticingly:“Let’s hear it again!”When he originally wrote this book, Rod Campbell had been inspired by seeing other early lift-the-flap books, such as “Spot the Dog”, and had been designing and creating innovative books with interactive elements and repetitive phrases since 1980. But he wanted to incorporate the flaps so that they would be an intrinsic part of the story. As a child he lived in Zimbabwe, before returning to Britain to complete his education (taking his doctorate in organic chemistry). This led him to think about explorers many years ago, who would send animals to zoos in crates, and this sparked his light-bulb moment. Each flap would be a crate or container of some sort, holding a different animal. (Of course some children may need to be told that animals are not delivered like this nowadays, nor by the postman in the ordinary mail!)There is a lot of merchandise and many spin offs from “Dear Zoo”. For the very youngest children, “Dear Zoo: Animal Shapes” is a sturdy board book. “Dear Zoo: Buggy buddy” is also suitable for very young children. It has a handy strap which can be attached to a buggy, or a child’s cot. There is a colouring book, where children find the animals hiding beneath the flaps and colour them in, and an activity book, including 40 stickers. A “Spin and Say” book includes a wheel with a pointer to all the different animals. There is even a Christmas title, called “Dear Santa”, which follows the same format, with different gifts from Santa hidden under the flaps.However the Dear Zoo: Noisy book is well nigh perfect. It includes the fun element of flaps, teaches both the names of the animals and how to identify them. It invites questions such as: “How big is the crate?” and “What sort of animal might fit inside there?” It uses language with simple repetition, but also creatively. It has clear, attractive and humorous line drawings in bold colours.But best of all, it plays a few seconds’ recording of the actual animal sounds. It really is very exciting to read and play with, and I’m beginning to wish I didn’t have to give it away to the child I bought it for this Christmas …
Bold and colourful. Brilliant for toddlers
What the Hell kind of zoo sends out animals by post, seemingly at random? Or considers puppies worth exhibiting? It's clearly run by idiots.