Two girls. Two tigers. Four years in the wild.
Two girls survive a terrible flood in the Tasmanian bush and are rescued by a pair of Tasmanian tigers who raise them in the wild. Their story of survival is remarkable, as they adapt to the life of the tiger, learning to hunt and to communicate without the use of human language. When they are discovered and returned to civilization, neither can adapt to being fully human after their extraordinary experience. Totally believable, their story will both shock and captivate listeners as it explores the animal instincts that lie beneath our civilized veneer.
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When tigers are better parents than your own ...
Even though audiobooks are a huge time commitment, I would probably listen to this one again.
This is told from Hanna's perspective. But Hannah is telling the story during her twilight years (maybe she's like 70 years old). And, being raised in the wild, her English isnt wonderful. But that really adds to the believability of what's going on. I feel like the narrator IS Hanna. This is more of storytelling than an audiobook!
And this type of a story is not one that comes along too often. Definitely a unique listen.
I'm not usually the type to speed up audiobooks, but you can comfortably speed this one up to 1.5x if you're in a time crunch (like me and I had just 40 minutes left and a 25 minute drive to work ....).
Hanna is a little spitfire. And Becky seems to prefer dresses over mud. So when the girls get lost from Hanna's parents during the storm (they're young when this happens, like 6 years old), they get adopted by these tigers (and not real tigers but tasmanian tigers). Hanna seems to be the first to lose her clothes and her speech but Becky seems to hold on to those human parts of her. So the most memorable part of the book to me is their relationship. Even though these two kids are complete opposites, they've been bound by this experience.
I have not listened to any of the narrator's previous works. But she sounds like a grandma that has had one too many martinis. But she makes listening to this audiobook absolutely wonderful! She's very expressive and convincing.
Who are the real animals?
There are so many ideas to explore in this book!
- Brutality and nurturing nature of Nature
- Civilization versus the wild/Man vs Wild
- Taming wild things
- What's necessary?
- What makes a family?
There's not that many characters in the book. Hanna and Becky, who get lost in the woods. Dave and Corrina, the tigers that take them in. Mr. Carson and Ernie show up the last 1/3 of the book, they are searching for the girls.
This book has closure, so you find out what happens to everyone! No loose ends, I hate that!
Also, I'm not sure what age group this book is intended for. It's definitely graphic at times and there are some heavy topics. I wouldn't pass this out to elementary school kids but maybe appropriate for mature middle schoolers?
Excellent Narration of a Dramatic Story