CM . . .
. Volume XIX Number 33. . . .April 26, 2013
Zindagi is a young girl who lives with her papa in a small village in India. Zindagi’s love for animals is apparent as she sits under a mango tree with a smile on her face while she watches the elephants in the water cool off and hydrate. When Zindagi finds an injured baby elephant on the side of the road, she instinctively brings him home to nurture him back to health. Although Zindagi’s papa is reluctant to provide an injured elephant a home, Zindagi insists the elephant must stay, and she names him Hathi. The two end up becoming “chickpeas in a pod”, and once Hathi is healed; the inseparable pair continue to live and play together. When the village experiences a drought, Hathi continues to eat and drink everything in sight. However, the increasing scarcity of food and water eventually starts to make Hathi sick, and the drought forces Zindagi to make the unselfish decision to set Hathi free in order for him to search for food and water elsewhere with other elephants.
The overall concept of letting something you love go is well presented in this title. Zindagi knows that, although she will miss Hathi dearly, she is unable to provide for him and knows that he is better off roaming India with his elephant family and friends. Many children will be able to relate to this title, whether they have had to let go of a pet or say goodbye to a friend.
Kaitlyn Vardy is a Children’s Librarian at the Prince George Public Library in Prince George, BC.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.