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Children's LiteratureJust like your own photo album, these zoo animals are presented in formal family portraits as well as candid, playful shots. Employing a conversational style, the writers are able to impart all the salient facts about each animal as well as toss in the offbeat and personal anecdotes that kids love. For instance little Haoko, the gorilla, tries to pee in the keeper's boots; Shiva, the male Sumatran tiger, is quite easily frightened; and Bruce, the Andean Condor, was actually afraid of heights and had to be taught to fly. The authors stress the importance of zoos in helping us all learn more about animals in the wild. They take the reader behind the scenes to learn more than one can in a zoo visit. All of the animals introduced come from zoos in Australia and include the rhino, Tasmanian devil, Komodo dragon, and the Poison Arrow frog among others. The illustrations are remarkable as the watercolors and colored pencil used not only are handsomely detailed but also show texture—whether it is fur, feathers, or smooth reptile skin. This is a fine addition to the "590s" of any library. 2004, Enchanted Lion Books, Ages 7 to 12.