As a baby growing up on the Indonesian island of Sumatra with her dear mother, herd-family, and best friend, Lali, Anju loved being an elephant. Sumatra was home with its timbered jungles, cooling lakes, and refreshing mud holes. Always taken care of and protected, there was nowhere else Anju would rather be.
That all changed when, at five years old, she was stolen and sold to an American circus where she spent the next thirty-five years. Then, for fifteen years, she was the solitary elephant in a small zoo. In her nearly fifty long years of captivity, chains and shackles were all Anju knew.
Anju no longer loved being an elephant.
Now, Anju is old and tired. Her caretaker, Vincent, is taking her somewhere on a semitruck. Where is she going? Will she finally be happy? Will Anju ever love being an elephant again?
In this timely, emotional story about the life and needs of a captive elephant, wildlife illustrator John Butler compliments author Wendy Henrichs’s story beautifully with his lush, heartfelt paintings of one of the earth’s finest creatures. When Anju Loved Being an Elephant is a story you’ll not soon forget.
2012 Skipping Stones Honors Award List
2012 Pennsylvania Keystone to Reading Elementary Book Award List selection
2012 Kansas National Education Association Reading Circle Catalog selection