Guess What is at the Zoo?

Children - Preschool
36 Pages
Reviewed on 11/10/2013
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Having grown up on a farm in the middle of North Dakota, Nancy O'Neill uses many of her childhood memories and life experiences as inspiration for her stories.

Nancy never planned on being a writer or author but when she was given the chance to work for a national magazine, she found that she really liked the business.

After five years as an editor, a relocation gave her the opportunity to gain experience in other industries including aerospace and technology. She then started writing poetry, short stories, company newsletters, and articles about many topics while she continued working in the corporate world.

After the birth of her son, she left the traditional job market to become a stay-at-home mom and discovered a new-found love for writing children's stories.

She has always gravitated toward anything creative but also likes tech-related challenges. She considers herself a techie geek girl even though she grew up long before the technology era.

Nancy enjoys being an author, entrepreneur, consultant, wife, and mom. She loves traveling with her family, especially to tropical climates. She lives in southern California with her husband and teenage son.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Patricia Reding for Readers' Favorite

In Guess What is at the Zoo?, Nancy O'Neill delivers several short poems, each about a different zoo animal and each accompanied by an illustration from one of the “Kids Around the World.” From the furry black and white bamboo eater, to the pouch used for a baby to ride inside for “six months or so,” to the animal not to be mistaken for a horse, each poem uses simple words to key in on a specific animal’s main features. In this way, preschoolers will learn the distinguishing characteristics of a variety of zoo animals. The poems in Guess What is at the Zoo? are easy to read. It is likely they will quickly be memorized by children who will demand to hear them again and again, as they are just right to hold the interest of a little one, coming in the little snippets that they do. But, it was the pictures that most moved me.

It is stunning to see the talent of young people, aged 11 to 14, who illustrated Guess What is at the Zoo? The almost Asian feel of the panda illustration, the natural look of the skunk, the charm of the playing hippopotamuses, just by way of example, were all delightfully done. The young people whose illustrations were selected should be most proud and what a wonderful way for O’Neill to help artistically bent youngsters to explore their own possibilities and opportunities! Children, fascinated by animals, are sure to delight in the prose and accompanying illustrations of Guess What is at the Zoo?, and the young illustrators whose works are featured, are sure to learn a great deal through the publication of their own works.