Leah’s Lions by John Richard Dony — Dedicated Review
By Bianca Schulze, The Children’s Book Review
Published: December 14, 2012
By John Richard Dony
Reading level: Ages 8 and up
Hardcover & eBook: 62 pages
Publisher: Dewberry Press; Revised edition (December 15, 2012)
What to expect: Action, Adventure, Animals
In this exciting new chapter book, Leah’s Lions by author John Richard Dony (Emily and the Spider, 2012), nine-year-old Leah prepares to save her lion cub friends from a menacing grounds keeper, Mr. Hemmings, and his terrible shotgun. Leah’s proud gang of animal friends help her to navigate the way to a safe haven through the beautiful but treacherous landscape of Africa.
Leah lives with her veterinarian parents on a wildlife reserve. When she discovers Mr. Hemmings evil plan to kill the remaining pride of lions in order to gain a permit to reopen a diamond mine, there is no way in the world she will allow this to happen—even if it means taking off into the jungle accompanied only by wild animals and a dung beetle named Gio (who, might we add, packs a punch with his funny ways and Italian style). The plan to rescue the lion cubs is foiled by Mr. Hemmings and it seems that it may not only be the lions that will fall prey to his evil ways. With minimal parent interaction, hope comes when Leah’s parents discover the kind of person Mr. Hemmings truly is. Dony—a real storyteller—has a knack for creating a believable narrative voice. This latest romp proves to be a tale of sincere determination that mixes the realism of human nature with the enjoyable absurdity of talking animals (a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down).
Those that are looking for an easy read that still delivers a complex storyline will be happy to escape with a copy of Leah’s Lions—a wild adventure that broaches grown-up topics in a child centric way. Both boys and girls ages 8 and up will enjoy this tale and it will resonate with budding activists, especially.
Add this book to your collection: Leah’s Lions
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