Zzzookeeper (Dr. John Hutton)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Zzzookeeper, written by Dr. John Hutton and illustrated by Doug Cenko, a fun bedtime romp about some mischievous zoo animals.

When the sun goes down and the zookeeper goes to sleep, that’s when the animals of the zoo get a chance to go a little wild. From the biggest crocodile to the smallest naked mole rat, nearly all the animals use their twilight hours to creep out and cut loose a bit. The big cats play in their ball pit, the birds in the aviary throw a rocking party, the manatees are having a birthday bash, and even the sloth and the slow loris get in on the fun. But when it’s time for everyone to settle down for their own nighttime snooze, the bedtime monitor Elephant is on the case. At last, even the rowdiest of the beasts is snuggled into bed – just in time to evade detection by the zookeeper.

Very cute! Between the bouncy rhymes and the delightfully energetic illustrations, this was a fun imagining of what zoo animals get up to after-hours. The activities chosen are fun and fanciful rather than truly mischievous, which makes staying up past bedtime – a common childhood transgression – the worst offense. There were a few text couplets that stumbled a bit in rhythm, and something about the way the elephants were drawn – trunk detached from their mouth – was slightly off-putting, but these were minor complaints. For the most part, this was a really enjoyable story that was a good length for bedtime and that JJ loved. Definitely Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

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