(Chronicle Children’s Books, May 18, 2021) ISBN: 978-1452127835

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The amazing true story of a herd of elephants, the man who saved them, and the miracle of love that brought them home.

One day in 1999, Lawrence and Françoise learn that a herd of wild African elephants needs a new home. They welcome the elephants to their wildlife sanctuary—Thula Thula—with open arms. But the elephants are much less sure they want to stay. How will Lawrence prove to them that they are safe and loved? What follows is a gorgeously illustrated real-life story of a friendship . . . and the story of the miraculous way that love given freely will return—greater and more wonderful than it began.

Winner! 2023-2024 California Young Readers Medal

Awarded the Norman A. Sugarman Honor in Children’s Biography

Winner!    Pennsylvania Keystone to Reading Elementary Book Award Primary Grade Winner

Winner!  Minnesota Comstock-Gág Book Award Winner

Finalist for Alabama Children’s Choice Camellia Award Finalist grades 2-3

Finalist for CYBILS Award

Finalist for the Kentucky Blue Grass Award

Finalist for the 2024 Connecticut Nutmeg Award

Finalist for the 2023-2024 Iowa Goldfinch Award

Finalist for 2024 Illinois Bluestem Award grades 3-5

Finalist 2024 Utah The Beehive Award

Showcased at the Bologna Children’s Book Festival’s BRAW Amazing Bookshelf of “100 publishing gems” chosen from a selection of 2,200 books submitted by publishers from around the globe.

“The story’s flawless, gentle pacing illuminates the animals’ initial fear and the time, patience, and compassion it takes for attentive Lawrence to earn their trust…Hooper’s…shades of rich blue and soft rose heighten the story’s emotional impact.”—Horn Book Magazine

“In brief action-packed sentences, Tomsic informs readers of all the steps taken to bring [the elephants] back, with the text placed against Hooper’s beautifully realized illustrations of African animals and the vast, gorgeous landscape…with its focus on the elephants and the protagonists, this book is lovely, tender, and moving.”  —Kirkus Reviews

This touching true story portrays conservationist Lawrence Anthony’s relationship with a frightened, hunted herd that found a home at his reserve in South Africa, Thula Thula..The importance of conservation shines through the friendship story here, and both themes are beautifully complemented by Hooper’s detailed, atmospheric drawings of the elephants and their surroundings.”—Booklist

 “The illustrations are expansive with a limited color palette of warm oranges and cool greens and blues. The animal characters are dynamic, humorous, and emotive…A sentimental but high-­interest story based on true events of the bond between wild animals and the humans who care for them.”         —School Library Journal

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