22 September, 2015

The Magical Zoo #1 #childrenbooks #Review

     I intended this year to make a trip to the (somewhat) local zoo.  It was going to be one of our bucket list items for the summer.  It didn't end up happening, but I remember when we went a few years ago, how much fun the kids had.  The Big One got to feed a real bear, Streaker got to give the little piggies some Eskimo kisses, and Baby Bee certainly would have been made hyena kibble if it weren't for the fence.  It was definitely a day to remember.
     One of the things that I remember most clearly was how insanely huge the tigers were.  I had no idea that they were actually so large.  They had two very high fences around the tigers, and I guess that it was probably a good idea to do so.  But still, it was such an incredible feeling to be so close to something so massive and dangerous.  It was a very exciting day.
     In the book I just read, called The Magical Zoo #1, a girl named Sally gets to encounter a tiger and many other cool animals when she stumbles across a magical book at the library.  When she opens the book, zoo animals, and even the zoo keeper start appearing from the pages of the book.  But the animals run off in the library and it's up to Sally and the John the Zookeeper to get the animals back.
     The story seems like it could be an interesting one.  Unfortunately, it was more of a chapter than a book, so it's short and leaves you hanging until you acquire the next one in the set.  I thought that was a bit unfair, even if it is categorized as a bedtime story.  Perhaps they all came out as soon as they were finished and so are sold separately... I don't know.  But be warned, even if you get this one free, the story won't be finished.  So you need to be willing to shell out a dollar per chapter for the rest of the story.  From what I'm seeing, there are five.
     As far as the meat of the story goes, the writing is made so that it's easy for a child to read and understand.  Here is a typical paragraph from the book:
So as you can see, the wording of the story is not hard to follow.  The illustrations are cute and digital.  The coloring is nice, the cat is cute and animated looking.  I don't think I'm being too critical here when I mention that eight pages of the book were the exact same illustration, only with a different animal thrown in there.
     I try to be understanding of such things, I find it hard to create a character that looks the same page after page and creating 10-20 different pieces of art for each book must stink, I get it.  But I do think that eight pages is a bit much, especially given that there are only fifteen large illustrations in the book, so I was a little disappointed in that.
     To wrap it up, I'm not sure exactly how I feel on this book.  It has potential, but I feel like it's a trap for people.  I also feel like labeling it "book" is misleading.  There is no product description available to let people know that it's only a chapter, so you're going in blindly.  I also feel like a little extra effort to at least add a second style of "animal exiting the book" page would have been good instead of eight of the same.  Or maybe even just change her expression a little, move one hand or foot... something to change it up.  I'll let you know more how I feel when I tell you about book #2.  In the mean time, the book is free right now on Amazon for you to check out.  I don't recommend that you get it if cliffhangers drive you mad *wink*.
     Have you ever been to a zoo?  Which one, was it nice?
     Until we talk again, feel free to check out the book's author, Dan Jackson, on Amazon or GoodReads.

Except for the product(s) given to me for the purpose of reviewing, I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.


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