Official Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

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AvidBibliophile
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Latest Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

Official Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

Post by AvidBibliophile »

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "If Zebras Ziplined" by Mary Barry.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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In the children’s book If Zebras Ziplined, author Mary Barry pairs the phonetic sounds of the alphabet with a multitude of active animal personalities. Apron-wearing alligators, cocoa-sipping camels, basketball-dribbling dinosaurs, and hula-hooping hippos will have kids giggling as they follow along, and illustrator Steve Wallace contributes some imaginatively lively depictions with hidden clues. As readers visually see a wide range of creatures go about their activities of daily living, they also encounter playfully poetic descriptions that firmly associate various animal species with their audible quirks.

Each letter of the alphabet is printed in block form, cursive script, uppercase font, and lowercase font, so a complete educational framework is present. Some pages even show a 5-cent coin, a 25-cent coin, and a two-handed clock, so extra learning opportunities have been creatively embedded within the storyline, especially for avid bibliophiles with a discerning eye. I see this as being a beneficial attribute for advancing readers as they grow older and progress academically.

All of the character names exhibit paired alliterations, so Elephant Ethan, Iguana Ike, Jellyfish Jean, Ollie Oat, and Savannah Swan become magnetically memorable monikers. There are also a few instances of interactive dialogue, such as the statement about a flat bicycle tire that asks readers, “Do you know what that’s like?” There are also questions asking readers about their favorite drinks and future birthday wishes, amidst a whimsical appearance of ladybugs, chocolate milk, drones, and unicorns.

A zebra character with a magnifying glass encourages kids to visually search for things on each page that start with the featured letter, so developing minds stay actively engaged with an additional level of prompted learning. A thorough, two-page answer key handily appears at the end of the book, so readers are readily equipped with a tool that allows them to easily double-check their work.

While there is one page depicting vampire bees and zombie trees, none of the illustrations are overly scary or frightening. I feel this book would be most appropriate for children between the ages of three and eight, but younger minds might enjoy having this one read aloud. The author effectively uses auditory repetition to help reinforce individual sounds, so I would recommend this book to any classroom or household that might be in search of an entertaining form of illustrative education for beginner readers. I did encounter a small handful of grammatical and typographical errors while reading, but they did not affect my overall enjoyment of the book, and there were no other aspects of the publication that I notably disliked.

I gladly award this picture book a rating of 4 out of 4 stars. Kids who love a combined presence of adorable animals, phonetic sounds, and can-you-find-it prompts will adore this one. If Zebras Ziplined will have them confidently navigating their way through the entire alphabet! This 60-page book is also the debut title in the A To Zebra series.

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If Zebras Ziplined
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Post by Raluca_Mihaila »

What a great way to remember and fall in love with the alphabet! It reminds me of the songs from The Sound of Music. :) Lovely review, as always!
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Latest Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

Post by AvidBibliophile »

Raluca_Mihaila wrote: 03 May 2021, 03:39 What a great way to remember and fall in love with the alphabet! It reminds me of the songs from The Sound of Music. :) Lovely review, as always!
Oh for sure! The alphabet presents a world of fun opportunities for memorization and learning, and quirky animals make excellent teachers. 🦓 Thank you!
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Post by RetiredOBNurse »

One thing I like is how each letter of the alphabet is depicted in four ways so as to teach/reinforce children to learn their writing skills. I love how each animal is named, again using the repetitive alphabet letters! How fun and exciting this book will be for young children and parents to read aloud. Wonderful review!
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Latest Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

Post by AvidBibliophile »

RetiredOBNurse wrote: 03 May 2021, 11:00 One thing I like is how each letter of the alphabet is depicted in four ways so as to teach/reinforce children to learn their writing skills. I love how each animal is named, again using the repetitive alphabet letters! How fun and exciting this book will be for young children and parents to read aloud. Wonderful review!
With the variations in font and script examples given, young readers definitely benefit from visual reinforcement of each individual letter! And the animals were adorable, especially with their unique and alliterative names! Thank you for stopping by. 🦘
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Post by Booklover Becca »

This sounds adorable and what a great way to work on pronunciation for the kids. Thanks for the great review!
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Latest Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

Post by AvidBibliophile »

Booklover Becca wrote: 03 May 2021, 18:32 This sounds adorable and what a great way to work on pronunciation for the kids. Thanks for the great review!
It’s memorization and pronunciation gone WiLd!! This little picture book would be so fun for many kids, especially those who love active animals doing entertaining things. Thank you for the kind words! 🐿
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Post by MsH2k »

I would love to see the basketball-dribbling dinosaurs! 🦕 It’s also nice that the author included cursive font—that may be extinct soon too. Thank you for your recommendation and introduction to these adorable animals and their magnetically memorable monikers.
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Post by Yvonne Monique »

The book title is very original and the content, according to your review, too! What a great way to bring across the alphabet.
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Latest Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

Post by AvidBibliophile »

MsH2k wrote: 04 May 2021, 01:03 I would love to see the basketball-dribbling dinosaurs! 🦕 It’s also nice that the author included cursive font—that may be extinct soon too. Thank you for your recommendation and introduction to these adorable animals and their magnetically memorable monikers.
All the of the animal characters were so darling! 🏀🦖 And the cursive script font caught my eye for exactly the reason you mentioned! I was glad to see it alive and well for another generation of children’s books. I hope many kids get a chance to enjoy this one!
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Post by AvidBibliophile »

Yvonne Monique wrote: 04 May 2021, 10:49 The book title is very original and the content, according to your review, too! What a great way to bring across the alphabet.
It was an alphabetical wonderland of truly adventurous animals! Every character was so giddy and happy and carefree. Kids will love this one! 🦄
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Post by Mbrooks2518 »

This sounds like a fun and cute book that kids can learn a lot from. My nephew loves animals, so I think he'll enjoy this book. Great review!
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Post by Sou Hi »

Thanks for your informative review. The animals sound so interesting with their activities and names. I'm curious to see how the zebra can zipline with their legs.
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Latest Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

Post by AvidBibliophile »

Mbrooks2518 wrote: 04 May 2021, 19:38 This sounds like a fun and cute book that kids can learn a lot from. My nephew loves animals, so I think he'll enjoy this book. Great review!
He’d definitely love this critter conglomeration then! All of the characters and letter lessons are so whimsically fantastical. 🎡 Thank you!
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Latest Review: If Zebras Ziplined by Mary Barry

Post by AvidBibliophile »

Sou Hi wrote: 05 May 2021, 23:13 Thanks for your informative review. The animals sound so interesting with their activities and names. I'm curious to see how the zebra can zipline with their legs.
All of their assigned names and creative outings were incredibly entertaining and engaging! Kids will love this book of letters. 🔠📖
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