Review: The Elephant Girl

Title: The Elephant Girl
Author: James Patterson, Ellen Banda-Aaku, Sophia Krevoy
Genre: Middle Grade
Publisher: jimmy patterson
Source: Publisher
Format: Hardcover
Release Date: July 25, 2022
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

James Patterson and award-winning author Ellen Banda-Aaku deliver an unforgettable story of a girl, an elephant, and their life-changing friendship. 
 
Clever, sensitive Jama likes elephants better than people. While her classmates gossip—especially about the new boy, Leku—twelve-year-old Jama takes refuge at the watering hole outside her village. There she befriends a baby elephant she names Mbegu, Swahili for seed. 
 
When Mbegu’s mother, frightened by poachers, stampedes, Jama and Mgebu are blamed for two deaths—one elephant and one human. Now Leku, whose mysterious and imposing father is head ranger at the conservancy, may be their only lifeline.    
 
Inspired by true events, The Elephant Girl is a moving exploration of the bonds between creatures and the power of belonging.  

Review:

Twelve-year-old Jama likes to spend time with elephants more than her classmates. She escapes to a watering hole after school, where she’s befriended a herd of elephants. She names the baby elephant Mbegu and becomes close friends with her. When Mbegu’s mother is killed for killing a human, Jama feels like she must defend the innocent elephants. Jama blames a ranger who pays off poachers, who angered the elephants by killing one of their own. Jama has to find a way to protect the elephants and save them from the people who are meant to protect them. 

This was an emotional story. Jama went through so much trauma in her young life. She was a bit of an outsider, which made her bond with the elephants. She witnessed animal abuse and death. It was quite difficult to read these scenes. However, this does happen, so it was an authentic representation of harm that can come to animals. 

The Elephant Girl was an emotional story with an uplifting ending. 

Thank you Little Brown Books for Young Readers for sending me a copy of this book.

What to read next:

Berani by Michelle Kadarusman

    Have you read The Elephant Girl? What did you think of it?

    Author: jilljemmett

    Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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