Industrial Deals Books Holiday Gift Guide Shop Men's Athletic Shoes Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Adele egg_2015 All-New Amazon Fire TV Beauty Deals Gifts Under $50 Amazon Gift Card Offer minions minions minions  Amazon Echo Starting at $84.99 Kindle Black Friday Deals Outdoor Deals on HTL
Caesar: The Life Story of a Panda-Leopard and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Buy Used
Used: Acceptable | Details
Sold by ToyBurg
Condition: Used: Acceptable
Comment: Eligible for FREE Super Saving Shipping! Fast Amazon shipping plus a hassle free return policy mean your satisfaction is guaranteed! Good readable copy. Worn edges and covers and may have small creases. The cover may have wear and if there is a dustjacket, it may have normal wear. There may be light writing or highlighting. All pages are present and item is in good condition. This is an ex library book, stickers and markings accordingly.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Caesar: The Life Story of a Panda-Leopard Hardcover – April, 2000

3 customer reviews

See all 11 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$12.97 $0.15
Audio, Cassette
"Please retry"
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"

Editorial Reviews Review

Acclaimed as the work of a "boy Thoreau," this brief, charming story of a mythical animal was published in 1930 when Patrick O'Brian, who went on to write the celebrated Aubrey/Maturin series of historical sea novels, was just 15. With its detached, authoritative narrative voice, Caesar: The Life Story of a Panda-Leopard reads more like a novel for young adults than a book written by one--though it is hard to imagine a grown-up writer including so many vividly realized hunting scenes, culminating in spurting blood and gore. In the introduction to this reprint of his juvenilia, O'Brian remembers being given a copy of "the Reverend Mr. Wood's Natural History, a mid-nineteenth century edition illustrated with a fair number of engravings." Already something of a naturalist, the boy "devoured the book." It must have spurred his interest in predatory animals, for Caesar demonstrates exceptional knowledge of the environments and habits of leopards and other large hunting cats of India and Asia. O'Brian's odd, matter-of-fact tone also derives from books like the Reverend Mr. Wood's, and provides much of the twisted pleasure to be found in Caesar. After his mother dies in a forest fire, the panda-leopard is forced to teach himself the fine points of hunting. One day he spots a large herd of pigs, strangely unguarded by a boar or sounder pig. He approaches cautiously, then notices a tall creature standing on two legs. Eventually his hunger overcomes him, and he snatches up a small pig, breaking its neck. "Unluckily the pig had time to squeal," writes the young O'Brian,
and this attracted the man who, with a cry, picked up a stone. His arm went back and the stone flew towards me like a bird. It hit me on the nose and hurt me more than the bee sting which I had had when a cub. It hit me on the same tender place which had never quite got better, and it angered me beyond words, and dropping the pig I charged, running low along the ground. Then I sprang straight at him.
With a shriek, the man tries to fend off the panda-leopard with a stick. "We fell together," Caesar recalls, "but his skull was cracked like an egg-shell. It was ridiculously easy to kill him." When he is eventually captured and tamed, Caesar learns to appreciate one or two humans, though his contempt for the species never diminishes. A wonderful read, recalling Kipling's Kim and The Jungle Book. --Regina Marler

From Kirkus Reviews

Juvenilia by the now-deceased OBrian (Blue at the Mizzen, 1999, etc.), a fantasy of a panda-leopards coming of age first published in 1930. In his foreword to the tale of the half-leopard, half-panda creature, OBrian writes, ``I doubt if my present self would have liked the twelve-year-old boy who wrote this talehe certainly was not very popular among his brothers and sisters. Nevertheless, that remote being and myself, his aged descendant, are linked by a common delight in reading. . . .[T]he boy was also something of an invalid . . . and spent long periods of time in the incubator room [his fathers, a bacteriologists, laboratory]. . . . [T]he tasks left a good deal of time unoccupied, and since it was obviously unthinkable to bring a book to read, the boy, by some mental process I can no longer recall, decided to write one for himself, thus discovering an extraordinary joy which has never left himthat of both reading and writing at the same time.'' Though this story was written by OBrian, there is little connection to his later work, save the deep interest in the natural world shown by the famous character in his Aubrey-Maturin series of novels, Dr. Stephen Maturin. The tale, written in the first person, displays the talents of a precocious adolescent who already was adept at painting a setting and filling it with characters that are believable. The natural world, red in tooth and claw, is depicted as cold and harsh; in an early episode the young panda-leopards brother wanders out of the home and is torn apart by a hyena. The young panda-leopard has a variety of encounters with a variety of creatures, both animal and human, but there is little of the narrative drive that propels readers through OBrians later fiction. Though clearly the writing of an adolescent, sure to be a hit for anyone who cant believe there are no more novels from a modern master.-- Copyright © 2000 Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

Hero Quick Promo
Holiday Deals in Kindle Books
Save up to 85% on more than 1,000 Kindle Books. These deals are valid until November 30, 2015. Learn more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 100 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (April 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393049183
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393049183
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 0.6 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,193,014 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

In addition to twenty volumes in the highly respected Aubrey/Maturin series, Patrick O'Brian's many books include "Testimonies," "The Golden Ocean," and "The Unknown Shore". O'Brian also wrote acclaimed biographies of Pablo Picasso and Sir Joseph Banks and translated many works from the French, among them the novels and memoirs of Simone de Beauvoir and Jean Lacouture's biographies of Charles de Gaulle. He passed away in January 2000 at the age of 85.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By anthony colin on April 19, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Many children of fourteen have trouble reading, much less writing well enough to get published. It's a child's story, but already you get glimpes of Aubrey/Maturin. If you're a book collector--and even if you are not--get it for value, and of course for the sheer pleasure of reading what is truly a well-told tale. The first sentence of the first page grabbed me and it never let go. Listen to this:
First you must understand that I am a panda-leopard. My father was a giant panda and my mother a snow-leopard.
And four sentences down the page:
The first thing to make any great impression on my mind was the killing of my sister.
I challenge anyone to put the book down after that.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Andyrew on January 26, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book follows the life of a panda leopard. At first, he's nameless, living with his brothers, sister, and mother in a cave. Later he's captured, put into a cage and domesticated. He learns first to live this kind of life. Then he learns to love his master. He comes to the point where his love for his master overcomes his reason. Caesar questions this, but comes back to the fact he does love his master and wouldn't think of disobeying or hurting him. The story also covers another part of his life where Caesar finds a mate and becomes a father. And all the trials and rewards this new life brings. The book basically documents the nature of nature. Right off the bat, the book is an account of nature, its vicious brutality, and its laws. How in nature, death is an everyday thing and its just part of nature. Caesar looses everything, his family, the family he brings into the world, and the family he makes when his master captures him. The story follows him through this all and his feelings towards this. The book offers no sympathy towards anything living as that is not the nature of nature.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By FQHBOOKS VINE VOICE on November 19, 2012
Format: Paperback
Patrick O'Brian was only fourteen when he wrote CAESAR, and it shows. The writing is clunky, the story repetitive, and the transitions between scenes awkward. I suppose O'Brian fans might enjoy reading one of his first stories, but I don't know his work, so I just found it boring.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse