Part memoir and part ode to the natural world, The Story of Brutus centers around Casey Anderson's relationship with a grizzly bear born in captivity. But this audiobook's broader ambition is to inspire a listener's reverence for the wilderness and for the creatures that inhabit it as well as to examine "the braided path of bear and human existence".
Kevin Young performs these unique and gripping stories of grizzly and wolf encounters with a brawny thirst for adventure that would belong in Anderson's native Montana. Listeners might come away from Brutus with an affinity for bears, but after hearing of these close calls and outright attacks, they will surely give the animal a wide, respectful berth.
The heart-warming story of the incredible friendship between National Geographic star Casey Anderson and an 800-pound grizzly bear named Brutus, as seen on The Oprah Winfrey Show, Animal Planet, and Good Morning America.
Casey Anderson, the host of National Geographic’s Expedition Grizzly, met a month-old bear cub in a wildlife preserve in 2002, whom he affectionately named Brutus. Little Brutus was destined to remain in captivity or, more likely, even euthanized due to overpopulation at the preserve. Anderson, already an expert in animal rescue and rehabilitation, just could not let that happen to Brutus, who looked like a "fuzzy Twinkie."
From the beginning it was clear something special existed between the two. And so, Anderson built the Montana grizzly encounter in Bozeman, Montana, especially for Brutus, so that he, and others like him, could grow up "being a bear." And so the love story began.
When together, Anderson and Brutus will wrestle, swim, play, and continue to act as advocates for grizzly protection and education, be it through documentaries like Expedition Grizzly, appearances on Oprah or Good Morning America, or in this inspiring book, which promises to be an intimate look into Anderson's relationship with Brutus and a call to action to protect these glorious animals and the natural world they live in. The Story of Brutus proves that love and friendship know no bounds and that every care must be taken to protect one of nature's noblest creatures.
This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?
It's a fine book for someone who wants to read a more generalized story about working with wildlife or exotic creatures. I generally enjoy those sorts of books... but bought it because I wanted to hear about BRUTUS, not the wolves, wild grizzlies, other grizzlies, and myriad other characters Casey discusses. It was like taking a bite of cake expecting chocolate - only to discover it was, in fact, gingerbread. Not bad, but jarring, and not what was expected.
What could Casey Anderson have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?
Focus on Brutus! If you're going to write a book and call it THE STORY OF BRUTUS, the story of Brutus should be front and center. Halfway through the book, I was still wondering what on earth happened to the bear cub between his removal from his mother and the snatches of anecdote about his adolescent and adult self.
How did the narrator detract from the book?
The cadence of the narration wasn't my style... it seemed a bit off, emphasis-wise.
If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Story of Brutus?
I would have minimized Casey's backstory in the opening chapters, having it support lengthier passages about Brutus, rather than the reverse. For example, it truly IS fascinating how Casey observed wild grizzlies... but start off discussing Brutus, his habits and needs, and then lead into the wild.
OR... well, we could take the easy alternative and change the title. A LIFE AMONG GRIZZLIES or WALKING WITH GRIZZLIES would have been more apt, and not so misleading. Don't get me wrong, Brutus IS included in the book... but given the title, he should be the focus, not Casey.
Any additional comments?
Not a BAD book... it's just not what it appears.
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