Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 12/01/2018 Gr 5–8—This companion novel to What Elephants Know takes place in the Borderlands of 1970s Nepal. In the new Royal Elephant Breeding Center, 13-year-old Nandu lives with his adoptive father. Nandu and Hira Prasad, the center's powerful bull elephant, forge a bond when they experience an earthquake together. This moment sparks an emotional journey for Nandu as he comes to grips with the reality of the time and place: animal poaching. Nandu, the narrator, is able to relate to the characters in the story on a deep level, having experienced loss among his people and the animals that surround him. Powerful messages resonate throughout the novel, including kindness, empathy, and harmony among individuals practicing different faiths. These messages authentically come through in the actions and deeds of the main characters' and their responses to some of the difficult events of the novel. The author deftly weaves his scientific knowledge with gentle prose to create a heartfelt tale. A glossary of important terms is a helpful reference for readers. VERDICT Highly recommended and a must-buy where there are fans of What Elephants Know.—Selene Athas, Director of Libraries, Roland Park Country School - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 12/01/2018 Nandu, now 13, has found happiness in his life in the Nepalese borderlands, where he lives with his adoptive father at the Royal Elephant Breeding Center, among the king's elephants and rhinos. But life in the borderlands, though wondrous, is not easy; as Nandu spends his days working with Hira Prasad, the bull elephant with whom he has formed a special bond, he also deals with environmental issues, like drought and famine, and faces increasing problems with poachers, who are willing to kill Nandu's beloved animals for their tusks and horns. He learns the depths to which opportunistic humans will sink, and, in finding new friendships, discovers the goodness that people can offer as well. In this sequel to What Elephants Know (2016), naturalist Dinerstein offers further insight into a hidden world as Nandu learns more about human nature and his own heart through his work with the elephants. With its abundant STEM connections and quiet prose, this is a natural fit for curious, animal-loving middle-graders. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.