Animals Strike Curious Poses is a collection of essays about famous animals (or groups of animals), some more historical, and others with a more philosophical bent. Some of the essays are interesting, even delightful. I got a chuckle from the “Osama the Crocodile” essay, which exposes both the weight of first names and the absurdity of children readers. And who knew that an elephant inspired the merger of the P.T. Barnum and Bailey circuses? But other essays are tedious, obscure, or seemingly pointless.