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**A huge “thank you” to Zonderkidz for partnering with me for this review!**
Baby “anything” is always enough to melt someone’s heart. But baby hippos? Show-stoppers!
That’s why I was so thrilled to receive a copy of the new picture book about Fiona, the adorable internet sensation from the Cincinnati Zoo who captured hearts around the world with her inspiring story and plucky personality.
ABOUT Fiona the Hippo
Born prematurely, at only 29 pounds, Fiona was not expected to live. But her spunk and determination helped her thrive and become a happy, healthy hippopotamus. With every challenge she faced, Fiona let out a snort, wiggled her ears, and said: “I’ve got this.” And she did! In this delightful story, inspired by the real adventure of this heroic hippo, join Fiona and her lovable animal friends at the zoo as she is introduced to the world in this whimsical and inspiring tale of
perseverance and friendship.
The illustrations in this hardcover book are breathtaking! In a gentle and subtle way, little Fiona shares her story of pure determination and how, with the love and support of others, we can overcome anything we set our minds too.
In the book, Fiona is surrounded by her animal buddies and I have to say, the otters kept bringing a smile to my face.
During read-aloud time, Fiona the Hippo’s pages are filled with opportunities to get everyone rocking with laughter!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Richard Cowdrey’s favorite things to draw and paint are the common things seen everywhere in nature. He especially enjoys capturing the expressions, eyes, and gestures of both humans and animals. Drawing and painting Fiona was challenging as the hippopotamus is a very unique yet beautiful creature! Richard’s bestselling children’s books include Legend of the Candy Cane, Bad Dog, Markey, and A Very Marley Christmas.
Visit FionatheHippoBook.com and watch for Fiona’s official hashtag! #FIONATHEHIPPO
Something To Do
Let’s have our own Pool Party in Fiona’s honor! If this inflatable hippo from Bed, Bath, and Beyond doesn’t make you (or your kids) giggle with glee, we don’t know what will!
Hippo Habits 101-Do Hippos Really Swim?
“Depending on water level they walk or they swim,” said Dagmar Andres-Bruemmer of the Frankfurt Zoological Society. Except the swimming isn’t really swimming per se, she said. Rather, it’s a kind of gallop.
But that doesn’t mean they wouldn’t appreciate a pool party! According to National Geographic, Hippopotamuses love water, which is why the Greeks named them the “river horse.” Hippos spend up to 16 hours a day submerged in rivers and lakes to keep their massive bodies cool under the hot African sun. Hippos are graceful in water, good swimmers, and can hold their breath underwater for up to five minutes. However, they are often large enough to simply walk or stand on the lake floor, or lie in the shallows. Their eyes and nostrils are located high on their heads, which allows them to see and breathe while mostly submerged.
Hippos live in sub-Saharan Africa. They can only survive in areas with abundant water, though, so they live in areas with rivers and lakes. Hippos are amphibious animals and spend up to 16 hours per day in the water, according to National Geographic. The water keeps them cool in the African heat. They spend all day in the water and then hunt for food at night.
Fiona’s Fighting Spirit inspires Others
Just like the Cincinnati Zoo’s preemie hippo, Fiona, Calvin Underwood had a rough start in life. He was born early with multiple medical problems. And just like Fiona, a special care team cared for Calvin the first few months of his life. Darci Clark, RN: “He loved to be held, I remember holding him and calming him and just he loved to be up close.” Calvin was adopted by his foster family and is now a happy thriving 4-year-old, with loving parents and an older sister. Although he comes back often for care at Cincinnati Children’s, he made a special visit to reunite with a nurse who first held him, and he went to see Fiona, his favorite zoo baby.
Protect our Hippos!
According to the IUCN, the common hippo population isn’t endangered, but it is vulnerable, because their numbers have declined by 7 to 20 percent over the past 10 years, and likely will continue to decline. The IUCN estimates that there are between 125,000 and 148,000 common hippos remaining in the wild. Learn more here.
Fiona floatie + water toys + book Giveaway!
Fiona’s Pool Party GIVEAWAY! Throw the best pool party ever for your little zoo animal! Winner receives:
• a copy of Fiona the Hippo book,
• a Hippo pool toy and all the zoo friends —just be careful not to get your new book wet!
ONE winner will receive a floatie+water toys+book for their own Fiona Pool Party. Giveaway begins 8/17/18
- Prizing & samples courtesy of Authors of the above books
- Giveaway open to US addresses only
- ONE lucky winner will win one copy of each of the above books.
- Residents of USA only please.
- Must be 18 years or older to enter
- One entry per household.
- Staff and family members of Audrey Press are not eligible.
- Grand Prize winner has 48 hours to claim the prize pack.
- Winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter on September 1, 2018