cover image When We Went to the Zoo

When We Went to the Zoo

Jan Ormerod. Lothrop, Lee and Shepard Books, $13.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-688-09878-0

A family's tour of the zoo provides a rich vehicle for Ormerod's precise, delicate art. Her animals are intricately drawn and alluring without being ``cute,'' and the borders and boxes with which she divides her spreads create the subtle illusion that, along with the family in the story, readers are looking into cages or fish tanks, through fences or across a moat. Ormerod ( The Frog Prince ; Sunshine ) is a keen observer of fine, telling detail. By focusing on a pelican's yawn, or picking out, amidst the pageant of showy zoo animals, a pair of sparrows building their nest, she helps draw attention to small but significant moments that are worthy of celebration but might easily go unnoticed. Ages 4-8. (Mar.)