Book Review: Night Zookeeper and The Spying Giraffes

I have always loved reading with the Beans, it’s something which we have done since they were babies but I have to admit I love it even more now when reading to Little Bean as she is at the age where she is interested in ‘real’ books with proper chapters. For the past week we have been reading Night Zookeeper and The Spying Giraffes by Joshua Davidson which we have been sent to review.

When Little Bean opened the front cover of the book and found that it had been signed by Joshua himself she was even more excited to read it.

Night Zookeeper


When Tom was six years old he wrote a story on his Grandma’s kitchen table about a Spying Giraffe called Sam. This giraffe could turn invisible and was therefore undefeated at hide and seek. Tom is now twelve and those stories are just fading memories. That is, until one moment of creativity opens a portal to his past and Tom finds himself in the very magical world that his Grandma had told him about. The World of Night is filled with strange animals, a dark lord with an army of Voids and Tom’s very own Spying Giraffe!

What we thought

The Night Zookeeper was one of those books which had Little Bean and I hooked from the very beginning. When we sat down to read the first chapter it was already getting late but as the first chapter came to a close, Little Bean looked at me with her big brown eyes and said “just one more” and truth be told, I was secretly hoping she would say that as I was enjoying the story so much myself, I wanted to carry on reading. On that first night we read three chapters!!!

In Night Zookeeper and The Spying Giraffes you follow Tom as he ventures through the Magical World of Night as well as travelling back in time to when he was six years old having conversations with his Grandma. Tom meets some amazing creatures on his travels and although there are pictures at the start of each chapter, we liked that the book wasn’t flooded with pictures on each page because it gives you the opportunity to conjure up images in your head. Her favourite characters are the Time-Travelling Elephant and Sam of course, whereas I’m amused by Bertie the Bumbling Bee and the Night Butterflies.

We only have one chapter left to read this evening and already Little Bean has asked if we can find further books in the series which is exactly what you want from a good book. It appeals to both boys and girls and can be a great starting point for them to create their own adventures. Little Bean has already been discussing with me what animals she would like to see in the Night Zoo if she were asked to be the Night Zookeeper. in Schools

Up until now the Night Zookeeper series of books have only been available in primary schools and has been so well received that the run workshops for schools as well as an online subscription service for schools. It has been proven to raise writing attainment of primary school students and provides support with the delivery of the new English National Curriculum. Used in schools the is a digital learning product focussed on writing improvement. Students work through a series of games and tasks drawing their own magical animals and writing stories, poems, news reports and more. All the work they create online is accessed by their teachers for assessment and can be submitted to compete in class, school or International Writing Leagues.

I have bought this to the attention of our local Primary School and they are very interested to know more. Perhaps it’s something which your local Primary School would be interested in too?

DISCLAIMER: We were sent a copy of the book in exchange for our honest review. All words and opinions are my own and may not be copied without my permission. I have not been instructed what to write.

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