The Moonlight Zoo (Maudie Powell-Tuck)

Hello, friends! Our book today is the stunning tale of The Moonlight Zoo, written by Maudie Powell-Tuck and illustrated by Karl James Mountford, a nighttime journey through a magical menagerie.

Young Eva gazes out her window at the high moon, unable to sleep; her cat Luna has been missing for two days, and she is worried sick. Hearing strange noises beneath her bed, Eva crawls down to take a peek, and finds the improbable entrance to a spectacular zoo! A talking wolf greets her and explains that The Moonlight Zoo protects lost and displaced animals through the nighttime, and offers to help Eva search for Luna within. The pair explore several fantastical biomes, but as dawn nears, Eva begins to lose hope. Will they find Luna before The Moonlight Zoo fades with the night?

Unique and wonderful. Powell-Tuck crafts a classic hero’s journey through a wholly original setting, and one that will surely inspire the imaginations of young bookworms. Eva is a well-fleshed out character, a mix of courage and vulnerability, and her wolf companion is equally well-rounded as a sensitive male caretaker. The sumptuously illustrated biomes of the zoo are stunning, and offer ample opportunity for closer examination of cutout elements and subtle details in the artwork. Eva even provides awesome disability representation in the form of Eva’s hearing aids that are easily visible but not narratively relevant, making her the rare disabled protagonist whose story does not revolve around disability. The length is perfect for a storytime, and JJ and both loved it. An exciting adventure for animal lovers, and we highly recommend it – Baby Bookworm approved!

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

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