When little Lulu gets an idea, watch out! After a chat with the animals at the zoo, she sneaks all of the animals into her house, where “there’s room for you all, from elephant to mouse.” Or so she thinks, until she tries to fit a bear into the bathtub . . . Before the zookeepers can bring the animals back to the zoo, though, bold Lulu dreams up a new place for her animal friends to live. And four-year-olds can be very persuasive. Children will love this rollicking, read-aloud tale matched by hilarious illustrations.
Four-year-old Lulu becomes sad when visiting the zoo: The tigers were crying really big tears/ and the life had gone out of the llamas' ears. Conversations with the animals confirm her belief that they don't belong in cages; penguins dream of dancing on icebergs and a flamingo longs to fly in the sky. She brings the menagerie to her house, where they play dressup, ride a scooter, and gather in the bathroom for a lovely hot wash./ But the bear in the bathtub was a bit of a squash. When zookeepers arrive to retrieve the animals, Lulu explains, they just want to be free, and imagines a place called Lululand, where they can cavort in the wild. However, that fantasy disappears as quickly as it's introduced: the animals are ostensibly returned to the zoo, and she continues to sneak them out on warm, moonlit nights. Ellis's (Scaredy Dog!) angular watercolors offer some comical details deer antlers come in handy for stringing party lights at the festive midnight snack finale but while Lulu's story has heart, its message is muddled. Ages 4 9.