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Home » Books » Children's » Fiction » Action & Adventure » Apes & Monkeys


By David Jones, Kevin Loring

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Format: Paperback, 169 pages
Published In: United States, 01 February 2007

A plane crash. A mysterious transformation. An adventure unlike any other.

Fourteen-year-old Gerry Copeland has mixed feelings about flying back to his parents' research camp in the African savanna. While his biologist mom and dad study baboon behavior, he'll be thinking about the video arcade and restaurants back in the city.

Suddenly, their small plane's engine stutters and dies. They go down hard. Gerry wakes up thinking a baboon has broken his fall. He's shocked to realize the furry arm is his own. Somehow, he's become one of the beasts his parents are studying.

Adopted by baboons, Gerry's only chance to survive is to stay with the baboon troop. His parents don't recognize him, and he begins to lose hope he'll ever be human again. His final, desperate bid to turn back means giving up the animal family he's come to care about for the human family where he truly belongs.

Baboon is the riveting story of one teenager's journey into the heart of the baboon world, where he confronts terrifying attacks by predators and humans, threatening behavior within the troop, and the day-to-day struggle to survive.

About the Author

David Jones is a full-time freelance writer with a degree in zoology. He has written widely on natural history themes and has published one previous book for young readers. He lives in Vancouver, B.C.


Gr 5-9-Gerry, 14, and his parents are returning to the African savannah after six months in London when their plane crashes, killing the pilot. When Gerry resumes consciousness, he discovers that he has come to live in the body of a baboon that is part of the group that his biologist parents are researching. He uses his human intellect and powers of reason to ensure his survival and growing acceptance by the troop; he also documents his gradual loss of his ability to count and read and track the passing days. After eight months as a baboon, a terrifying incident with a leopard triggers the teen's re-entry into his own body. The author soundly grounds his novel in accurate scientific detail about baboons. In spite of the less-than-satisfying ending in which doctors attempt to convince Gerry that he dreamed the entire experience while he was in a coma, readers craving adventure and nature-based drama will find this an engrossing follow-up to Gary Paulsen's Hatchet (S & S, 1987) and a logical introduction to Peter Dickinson's Eva (Delacorte, 1989).-Ellen Fader, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

Wild adventure gets a new twist ... the realistic facts of animal behavior will stay with readers.--Hazel Rochman"Booklist" (05/01/2007) Starred Selection 2008 Starred Selection 2008 Starred Selection Wild adventure gets a new twist ... it is the combination of baboon instincts and the boy's mind that drives the exciting story.... the realistic facts of animal behavior will stay with readers.--Hazel Rochman"Booklist" (05/01/2007) Readers craving adventure and nature-based drama will find this an engrossing [read].--Ellen Fader, Multinomah County Library, Portland O"School Library Journal" (06/01/2007)

EAN: 9781554510535
ISBN: 1554510538
Publisher: Annick Press
Dimensions: 18.47 x 12.67 x 0.91 centimetres (0.16 kg)
Age Range: 5-9 years
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