In View from a Zoo author Artie Knapp and illustrator Sunayana Nair Kanjilal have done a good job of telling the story of Thea, a house cat looking for adventure. Thea is bored, and decides the world outside would be much more exciting. One day, when her people open the door, she runs outside in search of excitement.
As Thea soon discovers, not all animals she meets are friendly. One day, as Thea is exploring, she encounters a dog that gets loose from his leash and starts chasing her. She hears a voice from up in a tree, and another cat, Geno, offers her a helping paw to escape the dog.
Thea and Geno strike up a friendship and Thea tells Geno she’s looking for adventure, wanting to be free like a lion. Geno takes Thea to the zoo, where he introduces her to a lion friend of his named Vern.
Thea describes her quest for adventure to Vern, and is amazed at how happy Vern seems to be, even though he’s behind a glass window in the zoo. Vern begins telling Thea how difficult an outdoor life can be for a cat. He goes on to describe how he stays so happy, even though he’s not outside. Vern’s secret to happiness: reading.
Vern shares with Thea how much fun it can be, and the adventures one can have through the magic of books. Vern begins reading aloud to Thea, and soon she sees for herself how books really can help even an indoor cat have many adventures and an exciting life.
Thea stops by the library to get a book before heading home. Soon, she’s on her couch safe at home, reading her book and enjoying a life of adventure!
Being an avid reader myself, I appreciate how Knapp shows children how exciting reading can be. This book is written for children ages 3-8 and is definitely worth adding to your child’s home library.