Book Reviews

Review: Rosie The African Elephant by Janet Kaschula

rosie the african elephant

Say hello to Rosie!  This sweet children’s novel was kindly sent to me by the publisher for a review and it’s such a great read for adults too, with a powerful message of love and conservation.  A great book with a great message, it really made me smile reading it.  Here’s my review of this book:

Set in the Zambezi Valley, this story begins with Rosie, a fun loving and sweet baby elephant, playing with her friend Circus, the painted hunting dog. But while the two friends play, a terrible tragedy occurs which leaves Rosie orphaned and very alone.

The story moves between Rosie and her animal friends, and the story of Sam, a young boy from England who starts a new life in the Zambezi Valley. The two stories are intertwined and both the animals and humans, with a touch of magic, have to work together to stop the evil that threatens to destroy them and their valley.

This novel is very much a heart warming tale, despite the very serious and sad tragedy that occurs early on. The book is a children’s book but the type with lots of text, so it is definitely for slightly older children to read or a book for parents to read to their kids. Each chapter is quite short and has its own title making for easier reading but I still thought that a few words dotted around the text might not be understood by some kids and would depend on their vocabulary level.

The book moves between the human and animal stories and it wasn’t difficult for me to keep track of which tale I was following, however some younger kids might get confused for a bit, especially when one character’s name changes in the middle of the novel, but he is still referred to by his old name a few pages later. These were the only bad points I could come up with for this book.

The story has some lovely characters with some lovely names such as Jeniffa the giraffe and Hippi the hippo and my particular favourite with his own mini story, Chiwore the rhino. As we learn about the different animal characters through the various chapters, we are given some beautiful sketch illustrations at the end of the chapters. These sketches are a lovely added extra to the book and can help some kids learn what the different animals look like, such as the painted hunting dog Circus, pictured at the end of the first chapter.

Another extra sits on the inside of the front cover and is a poem called ‘The Conservationist’. This poem is very relevant to the entire story and is another lovely addition to this book.

This really is a lovely book to read whatever your age. The cover design is so appealing and the message at the end of the story is very powerful. A story that’s both heart warming and at times a little funny too. If anyone ever wanted to get across the message of conservation to kids then this book is really the way to do it 🙂.

Rating: 5/5

Review published on Goodreads, click here

Book Description:

Rosie lives with her extended family and friends in the Zambezi valley. When the evil Mr Umani and his men decide to take the valley for themselves they commit a terrible act which leaves Rosie alone. Sam has grown up in England but is returning to Africa with a new name to live with his grandfather, a special holy man who has magical connections to the plants and animals around him. The very spirit of nature lives in the valley and makes its presence known to Rosie, imbuing her with magical powers. When the evil Mr Umani arrives to take charge of his’ valley, little does he realise that the schemes of man are as nothing beside the power of nature’s goodness. Between them Sam, his grandfather, and Rosie and her friends must teach him a lesson which they hope will change his bloodthirsty ways.


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