Saturday, October 3, 2009

Felicity Floo Visits the Zoo

Candlewick Press

E.S. Redmond

This is certainly an appropriate choice considering the massive outbreak of the H1N1 influenza virus currently sweeping the nation. Judging by little Felicity's reddened nose and glazed eyes, maybe she should have opted for the vaccine injection.

Just looking at the illustrations of Felicity gives me the urge to scrub my hands with antibacterial soap ... or bleach. Her hair hangs limp and greasy, her eyes are rimmed with deep shadows and her scarf drags listlessly behind her. Worst of all, her hands are smeared with .... (euphemistically) green nose goo. She looks rough all right, but manages to summon the energy to visit every pen in the zoo.

As Felicity winds her way through the zoo, slimy green hand prints appear on each animal, marking her path. The llamas have been tagged, as well as the ostriches, giraffe and red kangaroo. Not one animal seems to be safe from the germs that Felicity Floo is spreading. She hugs the elephants, pats the panda and even climb up to manhandle the mountain goats.

The Zookeeper can't figure out what is plaguing his animals. After Felicity's visit, they are sluggish and sleepy, with a strange green hue. Usually the fences are in place to protect the visitors from the ferocious animals. This zoo needs more gates to keep the poor animals healthy and safe from Felicity's goo!

This is a pretty clever and humorous way to spread the message of the importance of using tissues and practicing proper hand washing.Redmond did a great job with the illustrations - the animals look bedraggled and downright miserable following Felicity's visit. Even my five year old was grossed out by Felicity's appearance and appalled she would spread her sickness to the poor animals! We particularly enjoyed the rhyming text and hunting down the green handprints on each page. Felicity really gets around, so look closely.

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