From School Library Journal
Grade 3-6–Christian the lion lived in London with two antique dealers until they decided he needed to be trained to survive in the wild and live out a happier life in Africa. Bourke and Rendall tell this strange tale of buying the lion cub in a department store, giving him the run of their home and store, and introducing him to their life in the thick of the city. They describe where he liked to sit, what he liked to do, and how he reacted to new situations. All of the circumstances pile up on one another, making for a slow-paced narrative. The story is based on the authors' experiences, but, according to the CIP, the names of people, places, dates, the sequences and details of events, and the actions and conversations of real-life figures have been changed. So it is difficult to know what is true and what is not other than their love for this gentle lion and their understandable unhappiness about their preparations for his eventual departure. Some of the photos seen on YouTube are grouped with other black-and-white and color shots in the center of the book. Back matter contains tidbits about Christian, lions in general, and various famous animals. This is not an essential purchase.–Nancy Call, Santa Cruz Public Libraries, Aptos, CA
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About the Author
Anthony “Ace” Bourke was born in Sydney in 1946. He has become one of Australia’s leading art curators, a pioneer in the field of Aboriginal art, and a colonial art specialist, staging numerous critically acclaimed exhibitions. Ace hopes to immerse himself again in wildlife and conservation projects, to help address the world’s urgent environmental issues. He lives in Sydney with his two cats.
John Rendall is a sixth-generation Australian and divides his time between London and Sydney. He continues his commitment to the George Adamson Wildlife Preservation Trust and is a member of the Royal Geographical Society in London. He has been involved in travel-focused public relations, concentrating on conservation projects, lodges, and reserves in Africa. John’s three children share his passion for wildlife and conservation.