Human emotion and animal instinct meet poignantly when two six-week-old leopard cubs become the charge of 22-year-old game ranger Graham Cooke at Londolozi. Staying with the cubs in an unfenced bush camp surrounded by lions, hyenas and other leopards, he must first gain their trust before he begins to guide them towards release in the wild. It takes weeks of patience and gentleness for Graham to be accepted into the cubs' small family unit and to find ways of communicating with the young leopards as he slowly begins to introduce them to their new environment. Graham finds himself drawn more to the wary little female than her easy-going brother, but over time both cubs come to recognise him as their protector. They form a bond of friendship through which he can gain unparalleled insights into their development and behaviour. When, a year later, the cubs are relocated to the Zambian wilderness, Graham faces the hardest task of all: to set free the young animals he has become so devoted to so that they can return to a wild existence where he is unable to control their fate.
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'Graham Cooke's strong bond with two leopards greatly touched me and following their journey to the end, I felt as though I knew these brave little leopards myself which evoked powerful emotions. Beautifully told, with a message of importance: that we must never take anything we love for granted.' - Mike Dooley, bestselling author of Infinite Possibilities: The Art of Living Your DreamsAbout the Author:
Fransje van Riel was born in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, but moved to the British countryside, where she attended school during her teenage years. After returning to Holland she worked as a flight attendant for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, travelling widely and making numerous trips to Kenya, which rekindled her childhood passion for wildlife. She moved to South Africa in 1997 where she began contributing travel and wildlife features and articles to a wide variety of local magazines and newspapers. Fransje is active in supporting several animal related projects and resides in Cape Town. My Life with Leopards is her third book.
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Book Description Penguin Global, 2013. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110143530291