Reading/Interest Level: Preschool, Primary
Author: Alan Rabinowitz
Illustrator: Catia Chien
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Alan has a stutter that makes it hard for him to talk to humans, but when he talks to animals he can speak just fine. One day when he goes to the Bronx Zoo, he is sad because of how barren the jaguar exhibit is. At school, he is put in a class for disturbed children. The school thinks he is broken, but at home he can sing and talk to all of his pets. After years of hard work, he learns how to talk without a stutter but he still feels broken instead. When he goes to the jungle to study jaguars, he finds his voice and uses it to speak for the animals. Finally he feels whole instead of broken.
This beautifully-illustrated book is an excellent resource to talk about protecting animal species as well as to talk about impediments, such as having a stutter. It tells the true story of Alan Rabinowitz, a man that Time Magazine called ‘The Indiana Jones of wildlife conservation.” Parents and teachers can talk to children about protecting wildlife and about finding gifts and talents that are uniquely yours whether you have a challenge, like stuttering, or not.