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West with Giraffes: A Novel Kindle Edition
An emotional, rousing novel inspired by the incredible true story of two giraffes who made headlines and won the hearts of Depression-era America.
“Few true friends have I known and two were giraffes…”
Woodrow Wilson Nickel, age 105, feels his life ebbing away. But when he learns giraffes are going extinct, he finds himself recalling the unforgettable experience he cannot take to his grave.
It’s 1938. The Great Depression lingers. Hitler is threatening Europe, and world-weary Americans long for wonder. They find it in two giraffes who miraculously survive a hurricane while crossing the Atlantic. What follows is a twelve-day road trip in a custom truck to deliver Southern California’s first giraffes to the San Diego Zoo. Behind the wheel is the young Dust Bowl rowdy Woodrow. Inspired by true events, the tale weaves real-life figures with fictional ones, including the world’s first female zoo director, a crusty old man with a past, a young female photographer with a secret, and assorted reprobates as spotty as the giraffes.
Part adventure, part historical saga, and part coming-of-age love story, West with Giraffes explores what it means to be changed by the grace of animals, the kindness of strangers, the passing of time, and a story told before it’s too late.
From the Publisher
I’ll never forget Woody, the young Dust Bowl survivor, and his curmudgeonly older boss. The challenges they endure on the trip end up teaching young Woody indelible life lessons about fate, love, and life. From truck breakdowns to circus con artists, from meeting the woman of your dreams to visions of life in California, this is the kind of laugh, cry, tell-a-friend read that you long for. Grab a blanket and a cup of tea, and enjoy this wild road trip.
- Danielle Marshall, Editor
About the Author
Lynda Rutledge, a lifelong animal lover, has had the joy of petting baby rhinos, snorkeling with endangered turtles, and strolling with a tower of giraffes in her eclectic freelance career writing nonfiction for well-known publications and organizations while winning awards and residencies for her fiction. Her debut novel, Faith Bass Darling’s Last Garage Sale, was the winner of the 2013 Writers’ League of Texas Book Award. It was adapted into the 2018 French film La dernière folie de Claire Darling starring Catherine Deneuve. Lynda, her husband, and their resident dog live outside Austin, Texas. For more information visit www.lyndarutledge.com.
- ASIN : B088FF4S7Q
- Publisher : Lake Union Publishing (1 February 2021)
- Language : English
- File size : 14431 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 381 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: 1,265 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from Australia
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these beautiful giraffes to the San Diego Zoo.
Can't put this book down and love the fact it's a long read.
Top reviews from other countries
What a beautiful story. A story of self sacrifice, a story of humanity and of animals. I cannot even begin in words to fully say how amazing this book is. But I truly and thoroughly enjoyed every bump in the road as those giraffes were transported from one coast of America to the other.
Lynda Rutledge is an excellent writer and tells an offbeat story with charm, wit, and intelligence. I completely fell in love with the giraffes – and giraffes in general – as the historical facts of their amazing journey from the east to the west coast of America were blended with fiction. Along the way, we get to glimpse a bit of what life was like in the Depression era, and experience seeing the world, learning about life and himself, and falling in love through Woody’s eyes. I can highly recommend this unique and extremely well-written book and will be looking out for more novels by this author.
I give thanks that there was a writer able to let me live an adventure such as this one; to see the things she describes so well and to feel the emotions she evokes in a reader’s minds is such a privilege.
The book is for anyone with even the tiniest bit of worry that we shall soon be living in a human overpopulated world full of humankind and bereft of nature.
We cannot let it happen.
Read the book, enjoy the story and when it ends stop to think... then fight for man’s common sense to prevail, the greed to stop and and the wildlife to be saved... somehow.