It’s my very first book review!! Kudos to Barrie Summy who organized this group of authors turned part-time reviewers. I’m honored to be a part of the group. We will each post a review the first Wednesday of the month. To read through them, just click on the neat icon to the right (The Book Review Club). Here’s my first swing at a modern classic, Lauren St. John's, The White Giraffe.
St. John’s adventurous tale begins the night of Martine Allen’s eleventh birthday when a fire destroys their house and leaves Martine an orphan. “You have to trust, Martine. Everything happens for a reason.” These are the last words her father leaves her with before the unfolding of these tragic events.
Martine soon discovers that she has a living grandparent, something she’d not known before her parents’ death. And it is her grandmother, Gwyn Thomas, who her parents named as Martine’s legal guardian. Martine travels to South Africa to live with her grandmother on a wild preserve, Sawubona, where one mystery after the next unfolds concering Martine's past, her future, and the legendary white giraffe, with whom Martine is mysteriously linked.
Fate soon brings them together. She and the giraffe, whom she names Jemmy, quickly become friends, and Martine learns that she has a special talent to both understand and heal animals, although how far this talent goes remains unclear. She also learns that she isn't the only one interested in the white giraffe. Bounty hunters are after him, and by accident, Martine’s leads them straight to him.
Martine fights a race against time to save Jemmy before he is lost to Africa, and her, forever.
The White Giraffe is a fascinating read, especially because it exposes the reader to one of the many colorful, rich, and mysterious sides of Africa, the savannah. Martine is a character that I easily felt sympathetic too, without feeling too sorry for, given all she faces and has to tackle.
What is even more intriguing and makes this story all the more interesting for me is that white giraffes really exist. Rumors of one began in 1993, but it wasn’t until 2005 that it was caught on film. To read more, click here for the article in National Geographic. And good news for readers who really enjoyed this story, the movie version is due out in the near future. Click here for more information.
I enthusiastically recommend this book to Daring Girls and Adventurous Boys who enjoy danger, wild animals, and a waltz on the wild side of Africa!