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Threatened

by Eliot Schrefer

Threatened
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  • First Published:
    Feb 2014, 288 pages
    Paperback:
    Aug 2015, 288 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Tamara Smith

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The second novel in the Great Ape quartet shows that a fluid definition of family means home can be found in the unlikeliest of places.

Early in Threatened, Luc goes into the Inside (the Gabon jungle) with a man who calls himself simply: "Prof." They are there to study the chimpanzees; to record their behavior; to protect and honor these animals that are humans' closest relatives. Prof's past is a mystery, but it is obvious that he has been hurt in some way by his family. Luc's mother and sister have died of AIDS; the father is missing (and presumably dead too) and the boy has escaped being a servant to an abusive bondholder. "Humans will break your heart," says Prof as he and Luc establish their camp. "The same selfishness that makes so many of us hurt the ones we love makes our species hurt creatures that it admires. To hunt and destroy chimpanzees, like they would never do to us. Our treatment of animals is a great failure of our empathy."

Author Eliot Schrefer, has not failed in the empathy department though. His ...

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