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Chosen as one of the Top Ten Best New Books for Children 2015 by Andrea Reece. - January 2015 Book of the Month I had never heard of Przewalskis horses until I read this book (they do in fact have an entry in Creaturepedia). The last descendants of an ancient breed, they live on the Ukrainian nature reserve Askaniya-Nova which is where this story begins. It’s wartime and a troop of SS soldiers have been sent to destroy the horses, as ‘a biologically unfit species’. Kalinka, a young girl orphaned by the war takes it on herself to lead the last two horses to safety. What follows is a gripping story of courage and resolve, an unusual animal story that is even more affecting because it includes real life events. ~ Andrea Reece
A breathtaking tale of survival set in Ukraine during the dark days of WWII. Based on true events, a young girl must set out on a treacherous journey through the frozen Ukrainian forest to save the only two surviving horses and herself. This sensitive, inspiring tale captures the power of sacrifice, the endurance of the human spirit and the astonishing loyalty of animals. It will soon be another cold winter in the Ukraine. Max, the devoted caretaker of a wildlife reserve, must learn to live with the Nazis who have overrun his land. He must also learn to keep secrets - for there is a girl, Kalinka, who is hiding in the park. Kalinka has lost her home, her family, her belongings - everything but her life. Still, she has gained one small, precious gift: a relationship with the rare wild and wily Przewalski's horses that wander the reservation. Apart from Max, these endangered animals are her only friends - until a Nazi campaign of extermination nearly wipes them out for good.
The story is based on true events. The rare, wild and wily Przewalski horses are genetically different from today's horses and were seen as inferior to the Nazi's thoroughbreds. Courageous characters and remarkable animals will appeal to readers of The Book Thief and War Horse.
Kids love to read and so in addition to our Lovereading expert review, some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title.
Fast-paced action and interesting history keep readers turning the pages... Kirkus Reviews
Like the best stories told around a campfire, it is spllbinding... School Library Journal
|Publication date:||1st January 2015|
|Publisher:||Walker Books Ltd|
|Year Groups:||Key Stage 3|
|Topics:||Animal Stories, Historical Fiction|
Philip Kerr is the New York Times bestselling author of nine Bernie Gunther novels and several standalone thrillers. His book If The Dead Rise Not won the 2009 CWA Ellis Peters Award for Best Historical Crime Novel and Spain's RBA International Prize for Crime Writing. He is also a children's author of the seven volume Children of the Lamp series, translated into 30 languages and in development with Paramount, and one standalone children's book One Small Step about a teenage astronaut. Kerr has written for The Sunday Times, the Evening Standard and the New Statesman. Born in Edinburgh, he studied law and ...More About Philip Kerr