Published by Greenwillow Books
Summary: Plum is a cheerful peacock who loves his job at the Athensville Zoo, where he and the other peacocks are the official greeters. Itch is a ningbing (the world’s smallest marsupial) who makes up in evil genius what he lacks in size. Jeremy is a white cat who tries to do the right thing, but who gets an inferiority complex when he hangs around the big cats. Lizzie is a kind but lonely young zookeeper in a new town with a new job. All of these creatures’ stories come together as Itch tries to carry out his dastardly plans, and Plum manages to foil them in his own bumbling fashion. 115 pages; grades 2-5.
Pros: Matt Phelan has created a pretty complex story with lots of interesting characters that he manages to carry out in just over 100 hilarious pages with plenty of illustrations. The humor and the fast-paced plot will appeal to many different types of elementary readers.
Cons: The map of the zoo is a little bare-bones.