Book Review of The Dead Zoo by Peter Donnelly

Gill €14.99

A perfect book for very young animal-lovers, this is author and illustrator Peter Donnelly’s fourth picture book, after his much-acclaimed trilogy The President’s Cat, The President’s Glasses and The President’s Surprise.

In the Natural History Museum (commonly referred to as The Dead Zoo), the man in charge, Mr Gray, takes his work very seriously indeed. He’s not too fond of people, though, he sees them as a danger to his beloved stuffed animals. Some of the species in the museum are rare and precious, like elephants and tigers from Africa and Asia. And there are delicate skeletons to be minded too, like the giant Irish elk.

Mr Gray is very strict about rules, there’s no talking or laughing and no running about. So when he finds an actual live mouse running about, well…there’s going to be trouble.

This is a big, fat, generous book and young children will be mesmerized by it. It’s sumptuously illustrated cover to cover and would make for many treasured and funny moments while being read out loud to a very select young audience. Gorgeous.

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