I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (personal memoir) - Lawrence Anthony is "The Elephant Whisperer." He lives in South Africa and runs an animal preserve called Thula Thula. He is persuaded to adopt a herd of rogue elephants to save them from being killed, and he establishes a form of communication with them. Though they still live in the bush and remain wild, he learns from them and earns their respect. They form a strange bond, and his life is forever changed and enriched.
Much of this story is about the day-to-day running of Thula Thula. Anthony must deal with poachers, fire, Zulu tribal politics, animal attacks and running a preserve teeming with all kinds of creatures. In a place where only the fittest survive, there is the beauty of life but also the sadness of death. I'm an animal lover and must admit to shedding a tear or two, but I'm so very glad I heard this story. I was impressed with Anthony's patience and kindness, and I was amazed by the intelligence of the elephants! The message I take away from this book is one which is mentioned in the beginning, that there is much more to life than yourself, your family and your own kind. Makes me think...
PERFORMANCE - He does a good job. I liked his African tribal accent.
OVERALL - I'd recommend this book to everyone except younger children, due to some intense scenes. There is no profanity. Animal lovers who are softies (like me) will cringe and cry a little, but the book is wonderful so don't let that hold you back!
UPDATE AFTER THE BOOK - Mr. Anthony died in 2012 of a heart attack. According to news articles, two herds of elephants mysteriously traveled for 12 hours to his home shortly after his death. It had been approximately 18 months since their last "visit." They stayed two days, as if paying their respect, and then returned into the bush. Yet another example of the unusual communication and bond Anthony had formed with the elephants.
It was so very heartwarming to journey with the herd of elephants and was
so moved by the connections they made with humans.
I really liked the two main characters, David and Lawrence. They were so gentle with
all animals. I wish everyone was like them.
a journey with elephants
warms your soul
Such an insight into one of the most intelligent animals in the world. I loved learning about this misfit herd, and what Lawrence Anthony was able to do to save them. Just amazing.
From the opening of this book, you could understand that you were going to have your assumptions about the natural world fundamentally changed. I am so thankful to Mr. Anthony for sharing and Simon Vance for his excellent delivery.
Descriptions of elephant community life
He tells the story with conviction.
I couldn't stop listening. It held me from start to finish.
Reader - Writer - KnitterLove romance, mysteries, suspenseful stories with great characters. Especially enjoy series.
Wow, what a surprising story. I loved every minute of it. Not only is it a true story but it's told by a real storyteller. I learned a lot about elephants while laughing and crying with Lawrence Anthony. Anthony's passion for the wildlife of Africa shines through.
Simon Vance was terrific at bringing all the characters in Anthony's narrative to life -- especially the African natives.
The side story of rescuing the animals from the Baghdad Zoo!
After finishing this narrative, I immediately searched for more of Anthony's stories and was happy that another of his books has made its way to Audible (about the endangered White Rhino). I've got my fingers crossed his third book about the animals in the Baghdad Zoo makes its way to Audible.
Anthony was a man of real integrity and I am so glad I read his book. I've recommended this book to so many people since listening to it. An elephant never forgets and I will never forget this story.
Animals are intelligent!
This book reminded me a bit of the Born Free story in subject, as well as the hurdles the author has to face.
I thought his voices were wonderful.
If you think elephants are not intelligent, sentient beings, you'll change your mind after reading this.
I couldn't stop listening. The author obviously has a deep respect for animals, from the stately elephants, all the way down to a little spider. The love and caring that is shown by the author needs to be more prevalent in this world. Well-written, well-read and had me hooked from the beginning.
Yes. The story is captivating, suspenseful, and a world away from America. The narration is outstanding. I fell in love with the people and the animals and their collective wisdom, intelligence and ability to communicate.
It honors non-human life.
At the beginning, my heart broke for the tragic loss of the original matriarch of the herd. There were many other equally moving moments throughout the story.
I highly recommend this!
Tangential, eclectic, avid listener... favorite book is the one currently in ear.
Beautiful writing, beautiful narration and beautiful story. It made me want to go to the Thula Thula Game Preserve in Zululand, South Africa and pay homage. Both young and old will enjoy watching as Lawrence forms friendship bonds with a breeding herd of creative, determined and traumatized wild elephants... and then learns to "hear" and understand them. Got loads of yard work done... cause I didn't want to stop listening. Already added "The Last Rhinos" to my wish list. I want more :).
I have experienced these amazing creatures in Kruger National Park and two private game reserves in South Africa. I wanted to hear some history.
His performance conveyed empathy; however, his accent was more heavily weighted to British than the rich, lilting South African dialect.
I was overwhelmed by the author's sobering account of the African elephants' plight. He provides insight into the secretive life of the hierarchy within the herd. These sentient beings touched me by their extraordinary familial interactions.
Wow. Broke my heart, filled my heart. Story of a refuge that takes in elephants labeled rogue. But really, it's about a man, his love for African wildlife and living in the bush. It's about the politics, it's about the economy, it's about love, it's about death...fascinating and riveting.