Cover Image: Noah Wild and the Floating Zoo

Noah Wild and the Floating Zoo

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Member Reviews

Got this book for my granddaughter loved to read along with it..  Suitable to read to children from 1 - 3 years old with lively and engaging illustrations.
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This was such a cute middle grade book. Both the writing by McCall Smith and the illustrations by Kinnear were beautifully done. Noah and his sister get whipped away to a high-sea adventure with their aunt and uncle as they wait for their parents to come home from their work in the mountains. 

What an adventure awaits them! 

The star of the book has to be the monkey, what fun is had by all!!
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Noah and Hatty Wild have famous mountaineers for parents so they live with their Aunt Smiley, who is probably the kindest aunt in the world. When Uncle Loafy, a ship’s captain (who also owns a zoo)  comes to visit and tells them of his plan to return some animals: a llama (who is in actual fact an alpaca); a kangaroo; a tiger and a monkey, to their real homes. Over tea Noah and Hatty, along with Aunt Smiley become Uncle Loafy’s new crew and embark on an adventure aboard ‘The Ark’. Their story takes them around the world reuniting the last of the zoo animals with their natural habitats. A fantastic adventure that will be loved by children and adults alike.
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Alexander McCall Smith is such a renowned author for adult fiction, (albeit one I haven’t read), that I was really intrigued by a children’s book by him and this really didn’t disappoint. This is a pacy but easy read about the Wild children setting off with their aunt and uncle in a boat to release animals from the family zoo into the wild. I loved the Lemony Snicket esque vibe of this book, with the relationship of these two children with their quirky but likeable aunt and uncle but also the adventure they set off on. The tone of the book never talks down to the reader, which feels fresh after plenty of books condescending down to the reader. The story is set up quickly then whisks the reader away with Noah and Hatty, who are both interesting characters in their own right. The title “Noah Wild and The Floating Zoo” is a bit of a misnomer- this is more “The Wild Family and the Floating Zoo” as Hatty has just as pivotal a role in keeping the plot going and is a clever inventive character who is very hands on with not only DIY but also animal wrangling. Noah is great as a character, but I didn’t get the impression he was the outright lead here. I would be really happy leaving a new independent reader to have a go with this book on their own, or read as an easy chapter book with an adult, as I think a wide range of children will enjoy this. After all, isn’t it what most children dream of – an adventure with wild animals sanctioned by the adults?! I do hope McCall Smith writes more children’s fiction, as the short novel market is definitely better for having this novel in it.
Thank you to Bloomsbury Publishers and Net Galley for the advance e-book copy of this title.
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This is a funny, delightfully illustrated book perfect for children moving from picture books onto chapter books.
A simple story filled with a funny family, setting sail around the world delivering animals back to their natural habitats.  On board the boat are a tiger, kangaroo, llama, monkey and Noah, along with sister, aunt and uncle.  
What could possibly go wrong?
Well, you could discover that you have an alpaca not a llama to return, or that tigers can in fact climb trees.  Or you may learn that pirates sometimes lurk in bays and that monkeys so what they please.

All this adventuring at sea around the world (perfect for animal habitats, countries and oceans learning) has taught the family some valuable lessons.  Returning home after months at sea is welcome though the one animal still with them refused to stay in the wild but wanted to make his home with the Wilds.

A truly fun story with incredible illustrations and an imaginative story to follow around the world.
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Noah and Hatty are excited when their Uncle Loafy comes to visit and tells them about his next adventure: returning a llama, kangaroo, tiger and monkey to their homes around the world. Even better, he's looking for a crew to help him. When their trip is complicated by llama drama, a naughty monkey and very hungry tiger, Noah and Hatty discover home isn't always where you expect. 

This quick, funny story is great for emerging readers who want to read on their own, or younger children who want a longer bedtime story. 

Monkey Robertson was the highlight of this crazy tale - I loved all his cheeky disasters and children will too. He looked particularly adorable in the story artwork as he gets up to all sorts of trouble. I also enjoyed the casual reversal of gender stereotypes - Hatty fixes the boat while Noah shops for supplies. 

McCall Smith packs a lot of plot into a very short story, so it's impossible to be bored for even a moment. Noah and Hatty travel across five different continents and readers are treated to snapshots of some brilliant locations. 

Thank you, Bloomsbury for sending me an eARC for review.
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