Maestro Stu Saves the Zoo

Overview

Since he was knee-high to a grasshopper, little Stu's favorite place to visit was the nearby zoo. He was there so often that even the animals recognized him. The animals' sounds, from the coos and the snorts, and the squeaks and bellows, and the brays and the whistles, were music to his ears. His mother called it a symphony. Stu loved to pretend to be a conductor when he listened to the animals. But now there is trouble brewing at the zoo. A man wants to take it over and turn it into something else, getting rid ...
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Maestro Stu Saves the Zoo

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Overview

Since he was knee-high to a grasshopper, little Stu's favorite place to visit was the nearby zoo. He was there so often that even the animals recognized him. The animals' sounds, from the coos and the snorts, and the squeaks and bellows, and the brays and the whistles, were music to his ears. His mother called it a symphony. Stu loved to pretend to be a conductor when he listened to the animals. But now there is trouble brewing at the zoo. A man wants to take it over and turn it into something else, getting rid of the animals. When the animals learn of his plan, they want to take action. But no one has any ideas. No one but Stu. Young readers will enjoy seeing how Stu steps in to rally the animals to save their beloved zoo.
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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 1–2—An unsuccessful attempt to blend an unoriginal boy-saves-zoo story with idioms. Young Stu has always loved the zoo, particularly the animal noises he hears from his family's nearby apartment. But the zoo is under threat from Mr. Cooper, who plans to build a mall in its place. Lion calls all of the panicking animals to a brainstorming meeting, which seems more like an excuse to use half a dozen idioms. Stu surprises the animals with a solution, causing the ape to gratuitously say, "Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle." The sounds Stu enjoys, which his mother calls "a symphony," are the key to saving the animals. The next morning, as Stu conducts, the animals attract attention and applause with their musical performance and save their home from Mr. Cooper, who becomes their new pooper-scooper. While idioms can be entertaining in moderation, they become almost painful when they are forced into a story. Even Bowers's rich and colorful illustrations, which depict mildly anthropomorphized animals, aren't enough to make up for the didactic text. The heavy use of clichéd phrases would make this a challenging story for a child to read, even with the list of idioms and their meanings to refer to in the back of the book. The clunky text also keeps it from being a good read-aloud. For a silly and more kid-friendly introduction to idioms, try Tedd Arnold's Even More Parts (Dial, 2004).—Marian McLeod, Darien Library, CT
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585368020
  • Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2012
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 310,763
  • Age range: 4 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 11.20 (h) x 0.50 (d)

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