Annotations for Elephant in the Garden


Baker & Taylor
Devastated to learn that a beloved elephant in the zoo where their mother works is to be euthanized to keep it from panicking if bombs are dropped nearby, Lizzie and Karl of World War II-era Dresden persuade the zoo director to let the elephant be temporarily relocated to their family garden and are challenged to move the elephant to safety when bombs begin to fall on the city. By the author of War Horse.

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Baker & Taylor
Devastated to learn that an orphan elephant in the Dresden zoo where their mother works is to be euthanized in anticipation of an upcoming bombing, Lizzie and Karl persuade the zoo director to let them keep the elephant in their garden.

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McMillan Palgrave

Lizzie and Karl's mother is a zoo keeper; the family has become attached to an orphaned elephant named Marlene, who will be destroyed as a precautionary measure so she and the other animals don't run wild should the zoo be hit by bombs. The family persuades the zoo director to let Marlene stay in their garden instead. When the city is bombed, the family flees with thousands of others, but how can they walk the same route when they have an elephant in tow, and keep themselves safe? Along the way, they meet Peter, a Canadian navigator who risks his own capture to save the family.

As Michael Morpurgo writes in an author's note, An Elephant in the Garden is inspired by historical truths, and by his admiration for elephants, "the noblest and wisest and most sensitive of all creatures." Here is a story that brings together an unlikely group of survivors whose faith in kindness and love proves the best weapon of all.



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