Usually, I would provide a nice little introductory paragraph right here. And then, after my opening remarks, I would dive into retelling The Story – a brief synopsis or rearticulation of the contents of the book. But, honestly, I have no desire to retell the life story of a grizzly bear.
Here’s the short of it – Wahb, a grizzly cub, was born. While he was still young, he was bereft of mother and siblings. He wandered about, struggling to survive, and harassed by all animals bigger than he. Once he grew to his full size, he staked out his claim and returned the unkind behavior to his former tormentors. At the end of a long and prosperous life, he died after first losing his range to a craftier bear.
There were several scenes of sadness/violence in King of the Grizzlies.
The death of Wahb’s mother and three siblings is described in pathetic terms. There is an accompanying illustration which shows the mother wounded and the cubs tumbling down with hurt/shocked faces.
On page 35, Wahb kills a coyote. “Wahb smashed him into a limp, furry rag, then broke all of his ribs with a crunch or two of his jaws. Oh, but it was good to feel the hot, bloody juices oozing between his teeth!” [pg. 35]
Page 45 shows Wahb with his paws stuck in a trap. His fangs are bared and he looks very angry.
Page 61 shows a cougar with a dead antelope.
Conclusion. An interesting story, but one which teaches nothing really necessary.
Review © 2013 Laura Verret