- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
KLIATTTo quote from the review of the hardcover in KLIATT, March 2003: There is a Web site for SarveyWildlife.org—the organization that inspired Hobbs to create this fictional story of a brother and sister's experiences one summer in Seattle rescuing wildlife—everything from baby mice to owls and hawks, bears, possums, raccoons and any other creature in difficulty. To tie the story closer to reality, the parents are doctors volunteering in Afghanistan refugee camps for Doctors Without Borders, so everyone in the family is engaged in rescue work of one kind or another. Shannon is an extremely capable 14-year-old, and her brother Cody is only seven. Both children have been traumatized by the events of 9/11 because they live across the Hudson River from lower Manhattan; Cody actually witnessed the attacks so he is especially fearful. Shannon and Cody go off each day with their Uncle Neal in his old van, answering calls about wildlife throughout the Seattle area; after Uncle Neal is injured by a hawk, Shannon takes over much of his job with amazing courage. One especially dramatic rescue is of an injured baby seal trapped in a narrow beach with the tide coming in quickly: Shannon uses her rock climbing skills to go down the cliff and bring the seal up the cliff on her back. There is a secondary plot revolving around Tyler, a troubled teenager who is doing community service work at the wildlife center—this is required by the juvenile court after Tyler is caught torturing a dog. Within the story is a wider discussion of why people should care about wildlife. Having some experience myself with wildlife rehabilitation, I was a bit nervous about the omission of any mention of rabies. Itmay be that in the Northwest where this story takes place, rabies isn't a problem, but YA readers should know that in the regions of the country where rabies is present in wildlife, they shouldn't touch animals without being vaccinated. Also, most rehabilitation centers would have worries about liability and not allow young children (like Cody) to handle wild animals. All in all, this is a story that many YA readers, especially those who love animals, will really enjoy. The story has enough excitement in it to satisfy even the most reluctant reader. KLIATT Codes: J—Recommended for junior high school students. 2003, HarperTrophy, 200p., Ages 12 to 15.