A roller-coaster, real page turner, rainforest adventure for Dylan the sloth as his entire world is thrown into complete chaos. Suddenly awoken, he is faced with instant uncertainty and fear of loosing everyone and everything he has ever known.
His brief introduction to Viva the tenacious butterfly, is abruptly cut short as she flys off in search of answers, leaving Dylan alone in his familiar tree. Viva unknowingly becomes Dylan's focus to come through this devastating turn of events. Dylan decides to find out for himself exactly what is happening to the forest but to do that he must locate Viva. This terrified sloth leaves behind the once secure tree he calls home and embarks on the adventure of a lifetime.
Along the way, he faces potentially life threatening situations for a slow moving animal low down the food chain. He keeps a level head throughout and embraces adversity and diversity. He accepts the unfamiliar and unconventional, making the unlikeliest friends, accepting the most bizarre help and giving back what he never knew was even possible. He also finds out what humans are and exactly what catastrophic devastation they are capable of.
Just as Dylan reaches an emotional low and starts to loose all hope of ever finding Viva again, life takes a sudden and dramatic turn. There is a life changing decision to be made immediately and bravery surfaces from deep within Dylan. He rises up to this seemingly overwhelmingly impossible challenge, forging ahead towards a new future whilst accepting the past has to be left behind forever.
If only all humans chose to be as these animals are, our world would be a better place. This fable certainly stays with you, long after the final word is read; a powerful read, so many questions arise as this fable is completely relevant to our world we live in today, on many levels.
The language is utterly vibrant and hugely progressive in itself. This thin, thirteen chapter paperback with ninety six pages, is brimming with intelligence, positively oozing potential for further study and class projects. Text only, allows imagination to flourish unhindered by an artists impression, apart from the stunning and enticing cover!
Samantha Brenton is a remarkable author. She has taken us through a truly incredible adventure and right out of our comfort zone. We really were journeying through the rainforest with Dylan and seeing life through his eyes, the unexpected leaping right out at every turn. We feel better for experiencing this fable and only hope there is an extension to this; we so want to know how Dylan's life progresses and if he ever sees his dear friend Jules again.
on 8 March 2011
Dylan the sloth and his exotic friends kept me enthralled, I couldn't put it down. They're funny, they're touching (often all too human and vulnerable) and you really care about their fate in the shrinking rainforest, especially Dylan, who always tries to do his very very best, however inadequate he's feeling. I loved Jules the sleek jaguar, the praying mantisses doing their martial arts, the prim macaw. There's such a lively imagination here, in this gentle and delightful tale. Above all the language is so exuberant and witty and inventive, it made me laugh with pleasure. What a colourful book, in every way - a unique and attractive voice. Great for adults to read aloud and children to get stuck into.
on 6 May 2011
This funny and heart-warming tale of the changing face of the South American rainforest from the perspective of an insomniac sloth, is one that both children and adults will get much pleasure from. Written with a delight of language and well-rounded characters, together with a keen understanding of the ecological issues and human impact on the region, the story engages and provokes thought, without ever becoming too preachy. Invoking fond memories of the Jungle Book in many of its scenes and set- pieces, it's not hard to imagine this tale gracing the big screen in animated form. A first rate literary debut - I look forward to reading more from this author.
on 18 February 2011
I'll keep it brief by saying that this book is a wonderful read for children, grandchildren and adults alike. Every character leaps off the page and you find yourself page-turning with anticipation deep into the unpredictable rainforest. Written with style and rhythm, with some delightful laugh out loud moments.