Jasper's Story: Saving Moon Bears

by Jill Robinson (Author) Gijsbert Van Frankenhuyzen (Illustrator)

Jasper's Story: Saving Moon Bears
Reading Level: 4th – 5th Grade
For years Jasper, a moon bear, lived a miserable existence, held captive in a cage by bear farmers in rural China. The farmers extracted the bile from Jasper's body and sold it to be used in traditional medicines. It's a horrific practice and conducted on thousands of moon bears each year. But now Jasper has the chance to be free and live a life away from pain and torture. In 2000, Animals Asia, an animal welfare organization, rescued Jasper and other captive moon bears, taking them to its Moon Bear Rescue Centre. Here veterinarians attended to the bears' wounds, hoping to give them some chance of a peaceful existence in the animal sanctuary. But after so many years of abuse Jasper's wounds, both physical and mental, are extensive. Can Jasper mend his body and mind and finally enjoy the life he was meant to live?
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School Library Journal

Gr 1-4--After her first encounter with the horrific practice of bear farming in China, Robinson made it her life's work to rescue and rehabilitate as many of these abused animals as possible. She has also worked to end the cruel practice of bile extraction. Jasper's Story tells of one moon bear and how he came to symbolize the forgiveness and trust that come with love. He had been held in a tiny cage where he could neither sit nor move nor lie down for more than 10 years. At the time of his rescue, he was both physically and emotionally battered, but through the gentle care of Robinson and her helpers, he can play and interact with other bears and humans, and seems to have forgiven the cruelties that were once inflicted upon him. He sets a courageous example for both his bear companions and for his human advocates. And through the work of Robinson, bile farming is a waning practice in Asia. Poetic language and soft-toned realistic watercolor illustrations offer a story of courage and hope. Useful as a read aloud in conjunction with animal welfare and nature studies.--Eva Elisabeth VonAncken, formerly at Trinity-Pawling School, Pawling, NY

Copyright 2013 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Sleeping Bear Press
Publication date
March 20, 2013
BISAC categories
JNF003220 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Animals | Animal Welfare
JNF003020 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Animals | Bears
Library of Congress categories
Wildlife rescue
Asiatic black bear
Alabama Camellia Award
Nominee 2014 - 2015

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