Curious George is, of course, a mischievous little monkey who gets taken from his home in Africa and brought to live in the big city by the man in the yellow hat. Along the way he gets in many misadventures including falling off a big boat, accidentally calling the fire department and causing them trouble, getting put in jail, getting blown away with a handful of balloons, and finally getting put in the zoo. This is long for a picture book, but the text is simple and would be a good introduction to indpendent reading for newer readers. I think the characterization of George is what has made these books so popular - he's sweet, naive, often misunderstands or takes things too literally, etc. I think kids identify with him. The illustrations are bright, old-fashioned, lovely. I'm pretty sure they were originally done with a limited color palette but have been "colorized" in subsequent reprints?The story itself is kind of disturbing in retrospect: George is basically kidnapped/poached from Africa by the Man in the Yellow Hat, he's nonsensically "jailed" for calling in a false alarm to the fire department, and finally he ends up in the zoo - you know, trapped in a cage rather than running around free in Africa. This is very different from the Curious George most kids are probably used to seeing via the movies and the PBS show.