Fiona, beloved hippo of the Cincinnati Zoo has appeared in several books detailing her remarkable survival after being born two months early. This new title follows Fiona as she visits friends around the zoo and finds many different ways to express love. Giraffes entwine their necks. Monkeys groom each other. Swans swim together. Porcupines rub noses. Wherever she looks, Fiona sees signs of affection - but "her favorite love is back at home."
Rhyming text points out that wallabies cuddle babies in their pouches while "chilly penguins peck and nestle." The illustrations show animals from red pandas to warthogs cuddling, cooing, and enjoying group hugs. Several of the images cleverly work in the shape of a heart; readers may see it in the necks of two swans beak to beak, or the trunks of two elephants. Other animals may pose like the peacocks or wrestle like the bears, but they are all showing their closeness in a way typical of their species.
Richard Cowdrey has illustrated many other Fiona books including Fiona Helps a Friend and A Very Fiona Christmas. Fans will be happy to add another book about the world's favorite baby hippo to their shelves. Due for publication November 15th, in time for Christmas or to prepare for Valentine's Day early.
I read an advance copy provided by the publisher for review purposes.