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In the Shadow of Blackbirds
Cat Winters
The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl
Timothy Egan

Jasper's Story: Saving Moon Bears

Jasper's Story: Saving Moon Bears - Jill Robinson, Marc Bekoff, Gijsbert Van Frankenhuyzen Whew! I made it through this one. A beautifully illustrated book about a horrible animal abuse practice in China. This book tells the story about the rescue and rehabilitation of one particular moon bear and the organization that is behind the efforts to save more bears. I am a tender-hearted soul and can't tolerate animal cruelty of any kind, but this story wasn't as scary as I dreaded. The illustrations are truly spectacular, and the story is one worth knowing. In the end, this reminded me a little of the recent Newbery award winning novel, The One and Only Ivan. These moon bears are kept in small cages and their bile is harvested for it's anti-inflammatory properties in traditional medicine. The practice is called bear farming. To find out more about Animals Asia's efforts to rescue bears and end this practice, go to AnimalsAsia.org. A pamphlet was included in my sample/review copy telling more about the organization. There are endnotes in the book from each author and the illustrator, which further describe their experience with Jasper and how this project has changed their own lives. It is amazing that after years of abuse, many of these bears are able to live the remaining years of their lives in a safe, trusting environment, allowing them to heal physically and pyschologically as much as possible.