Ebook Purchase Links: (Also available in some places in print) A percentage of the royalties from sales of this book are given to Panthera, a leading international conservation organization dedicated to protecting and preserving the world’s big cats.
First off I love the imagery as the scenes with the native wildlife are told. The author does an amazing job of making the reader feel as if they are really there. Throughout the book she writes about the animals in a way that captures nature perfectly.
The author also does a very good job spreading the word about animal conservation and the more serious issue of animal poaching in a way that is realistic yet entertaining. It is clear that the author is highly passionate about these subjects.
Though not overly so for a YA book, because of the subject matter there are a few scenes that are a little graphic and can potentially be highly emotional for some readers, especially animal lovers. However, through these moments is when the authors message comes across clearest to readers and all the good moments in this book, of which there are plenty, make these more difficult moments worth the read.
This book also contains some very entertaining and funny moments.
The only problem I had with this book was an inability to understand and identify with the main character of Jazz. Overall I liked her but aside from the feelings about the leopard and her attitude towards conservation, I had nothing in common with her.
I also have some mixed feelings about the books ending. Although I was not particularly fond of the way the final chapter ended, I still really liked it in a way especially because its not how I expected it to end so it came as a surprise and it also did a really good job of reinforcing the real life issues presented in this book.
I would definitely recommend to any and all animal lovers but particularly those who have found themselves in the situation of bonding with an animal, either wild or domestic as a foster or caretaker whose job is now or has been in the past to prepare the animal they have bonded with for the new life that it would live upon leaving their care.
Besides the general message about poaching and animal conservation I think this book also serves as a good reminder for why animal fosters and those who rehabilitate wild animals do what they do.