It is said that the key to happiness is three things: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for. Laura finds all three in the unlikeliest of places, and none of them is quite what she expected. I challenge you to read the first page of her memoir and not want to continue spending time with her as she stumbles into a makeshift camp full of misfit humans and animals in the middle of the jungle. She is so completely out of her comfort zone, so terrified of the jungle and everything in it, but she also finds herself uncharacteristically driven to stick it out. And when she does, she is rewarded beyond anything she could have imagined. How could she have known, for example, that the most important relationship of her adult life would be with a heartbroken and highly neurotic puma who would finally teach her how to trust and be trusted?
Oh, the animals! You come to know and love them all. Lorenzo, the parrot who is afraid to fly and infatuated with a human; Panchita, the kleptomaniac pig you don’t want to get on the wrong side of; and of course, Coco and Faustino, a quirky pair of monkeys with a backstory who keep a stash of stolen bras in the roof, sulk when scolded, and cuddle up with the humans in their sleeping bags at night...invited or not. And then there is the jungle, described by Laura in such vivid, lush, and beautiful language that it seems to be a living and breathing thing—a force of nature with the power to change your life, as it did for Laura, who learns that once the jungle finds its way into your soul, there is simply no going home again.
— Liza Darnton, Editor