Parents' Guide to

The Zoo at the Edge of the World

By Mary Eisenhart, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 9+

Bullied kid talks with animals in colonial fantasy tale.

The Zoo at the Edge of the World Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 13+

Based on 1 parent review

age 13+

Takes you on a journey to a live fantasy zoo!

Marlin is a boy with a gift that the animals at the zoo sent him a message to protect them and set them free until someone or something gets in the way. Marlin struggles against his dad. Marlin wants to tell his dad about the truth of the animals while his dad wants to pay attention to his career instead listening to his own son. Pay attention whom tells you what can happen it might affect your future. This book is amazing because anything can be right or wrong. I would recommend to age 13 and up because decisions you have to make that can be dangerous and risky. Marlin had to face many challenges like growing up to be like his father or be like a family with the animals, but choosing one instead the other causes something or someone to get in the way.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

The Bully Book author Eric Kahn Gale returns with a heartfelt, uneven book that may try to do too much. It's a coming-of-age tale of a stuttering kid overshadowed by a larger-than-life parent and a bullying brother, now forced to question everything he thought was true; the toxic legacy of colonialism; the ethics of exploiting animals for human gain, whether for greed or "the greater good"; and -- oh, yeah -- a bit of first love with an aristocratic girl whose parents definitely have other ideas for her. Parts of the story are almost painfully compelling, whereas others feel like a slapdash attempt to connect an assortment of themes. Many kids will relate to Marlin's struggles to protect his loved ones while rising above his disability and his toxic family and cheer him on as he finds courage to do the right thing. Animal-loving kids may find some scenes involving cute, vulnerable, doomed critters especially upsetting.

Book Details

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