The Elephant's Tale by Lauren St John

The Elephant's Tale

Written by Lauren St John

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

This is the fourth thrilling African adventure featuring Martine, her beloved giraffe Jemmy and Martine’s best friend Ben. With just 13 days to investigate the mysterious goings on at the Game Reserve and the fate of 20 missing elephants, Martine must stop at nothing to unearth the truth. Either that or she stands to lose the wildlife sanctuary and the animals altogether. There’s simply no-one better than Lauren St John for such vivid descriptions of Africa and the wild animals featured.

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The Elephant's Tale by Lauren St John

It's the first day of the December school holidays and Martine has lots of fun planned for the next few weeks, not least spending time with Jemmy, her beloved white giraffe, and her best friend, Ben. But her plans for a peaceful holiday are soon shattered when a sinister man informs Martine and her grandmother that Sabuwona is about to be repossessed. The nature reserve, and everything in it, will no longer belong to them.

Martine is determined to save the home she's grown to love. When Grace has a vision about a unique herd of Namibian elephants, she knows she must travel to Namibia to learn their secrets. This could be the answer to all their troubles...

About the Author

Lauren St John

Lauren St John was our Guest Editor in August 2013 - you can see her book choices below.

Lauren St John was born in Gatooma, Rhodesia, now Kadoma, Zimbabwe. Aged 11 she and her family moved to Rainbow's End farm in Gadzema, which later became the subject of her memoir. After studying journalism, she relocated to England, where she was golf correspondent to The Sunday Times. She is the author of several books on sports and music, as well as the award-winning children's series The White Giraffe, Dolphin Song, The Last Leopard and The Elephant's Tale. Her latest book, One Dollar Horse, is published in March 2012.

Lauren St John has a fascinating life story and her captivating and haunting memoir about her childhood spent in rural Africa has been published. Rainbow's End captures the overwhelming beauty and extraordinary danger of life in the African bush and it's this life story that is the inspiration for many of her animal stories for children. This memoir is definitely not for children to read but we mention it here as parents of children reading Lauren's children's books may well like to read about this awe-inspiring author.

My Favourite Children’s Books by Lauren St John

For Love of a Horse by Patricia Leitch. Without doubt this is the book that inspired me most as a child. At the time I was living on a farm in Zimbabwe in Southern Africa and had a black horse called Morning Star and it seemed to me that the way I felt about him and Jinny Manders felt about the chestnut Arab mare she rescued from a circus in For Love of a Horse was identical. This series is just brilliant in every way. I’ve read each book at least five times and would happily do so again.

Journey to the River Sea by Eva Ibbotsen. To me, Eva Ibbotsen is a genius. You can pick up any of her books – The Dragonfly Pool and One Boy and His Dog are also fantastic – and be guaranteed a good read. A warm, joyous book to be enjoyed by any generation.

Five Run Away Together by Enid Blyton. I think I read my first Famous Five novel when I was six and I was hooked from that moment on. Sure there are bits of that have dated and Enid Blyton is not the world’s greatest prose stylist. But decades on, the appeal of the Famous Five is as strong as ever. Impossible to resist.

The Black Stallion by Walter Farley. The ultimate wish fulfillment fantasy, later made into an award-winning film. I’ve read this book more times than I can count and it never loses it’s magic. The film is great too.

Ring of Bright Water by Gavin Maxwell. I read this book as a set book at school in Zimbabwe and it had a big impact on me. Gavin Maxwell’s beautifully written book about his life with otters on Scotland’s remote west coast has been called a ‘masterpiece’ and ‘one of the outstanding wildlife books of all time.’ Anyone who loves animals and nature would enjoy this special book. Ring of Bright Water was later made into an outstanding film starring Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers.

The Tiger who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr. I fell in love with the smiley, chubby tiger in Judith Kerr’s classic picturebook during one hot Zimbabwe summer when I had to read it four or five times a day to my niece. If it had been up to her I’d have read it even more frequently. Each time I got to the end, she pleaded for us to begin again. Pure genius.

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Orion Publishing Co

Publication date

6th August 2009




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