Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Jimmy the Joey - book review

"Lord! when you sell a man a book you don't sell just twelve ounces of paper and glue-you sell him a whole new life.  Love and friendship and humour and ships at sea by night-there's all heaven and earth in a book, a real book. "
                                         ~ Christopher Morley

Title:  Jimmy the Joey
       The True Story of an Amazing Koala Rescue   

By:  Deborah Lee Rose and Susan Kelly
Photos:  Susan Kelly

This story is bittersweet.  The bitter pill comes at the beginning when one night a mother koala and her baby cross a road to get to a new feeding spot.  She is in need of a more abundant supply of fresh eucalyptus leaves to keep her and her baby healthy and alive.  Upon crossing she is tragically hit with a car leaving her deceased and her little joey injured and alone at the side of the road.  The next morning a good Samaritan, a workman, finds the frightened little fellow and calls the Koala ambulance to come and rescue him.  The joey is whisked off to the hospital immediately to be tended to.

Now the sweet pill.  Kind volunteers wrap him in a soft woollen pouch (simulating his mother's), give him the name Jimmy, and start his rehabilitation.  The hospital's wildlife biologist checks him over from head to toe and then assigns him to a very special trained volunteer name Barb, who takes him to her home to take care of his every need.  Jimmy feels safe and loved with her and they bond as a mother and son.  Every day he grows bigger, becomes stronger, and discovers all he needs to know to become a fully functioning adult koala.  After many months of intensive nurturing, Barb knowing he is fully recovered and can fend for himself, releases him back into the wild.

The book is informative as you learn many facts about the koala bear and uplifting because you become aware of the specialized facilities and volunteers that out there to help these injured and orphaned animals.   At the end of the book, true to National Geographic's Kids brilliant style, are maps, koala bear facts, websites for you to visit,  recommended books to read about these little critters, places to see koalas worldwide and ways you can become involved with these hospitals to assist their funding or even become a volunteer.

The photographs are big, bold and amazing and they enhance and enrich the text on every single page. National Geographic publish the best in children's books and I heartily recommend you add these non-fiction stories to your child's collection.

About the authors and photographer :

Susan Kelly is a video journalist and producer with a focus on the environment.  Susan's first independent documentary film, Koala Hospital, presents the poignant and surprising life of koalas, set at the world's first hospital dedicated to koalas.  The film was an award nominee at the prestigious Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival and won Best Feature Film at the Wildlife Conservation Film Festival.  Susan currently focuses on "urban front lines," where the intersection between people and wildlife is the most problematic.  She is also working on a Koala Hospital television series.  For more info on the film, go to

Deborah Lee Rose is an internationally published author of children's books, including Ocean Babies from the National Geographic and Someone's Sleepy.  Her books are among the New York Public Library's 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing, and she has twice won the NAPPA Gold Award.  Deborah is a science writer for the university of California, Berkeley"s Lawrence Hall of Science and helped create, the STEM activity collection named the Best Website for Teaching and Learning by the American Association of School Librarians.  Visit her on Facebook at

Book Review Rating:   9  (Close to Perfection!)

Read on and read always!  Enjoy your a good book.

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