Book Name: Trunk Call for Ajju
Written By: Anjana Nagabhushana
Illustrated By: Siddhi Vartak
Published By: Puffin Books (An Imprint of Penguin Random House)
Number of Pages: 114
Recommended Age: 6 years onwards (publisher’s recommendation is 7 years+)
I’m posting this review on behalf of my 9-year-old son, Sharav. I’ll reserve my comments for later and share my son’s review first.
Trunk Call for Ajju is a heartwarming book that reminds us of our collective responsibility to fight for those who cannot speak. It’s about a boy named Ajju who lives in Bangalore, India. He was living his routine life – working out grammar with his friend Karthik, learning guitar with Miss Alva, and getting in trouble with his parents for making sugar cube igloos with his beloved partner-in-crime, Kini Maasi.
One day, when Kini Maasi returned from Rainbow Animal Aid (the animal shelter she owned), she looked troubled. Ajju noticed this and was curious to know the reason. She told him that animal rescuers just rescued an injured baby elephant from distant Zimbabwe. The name of the elephant was Molly. Her mother got killed during a hunting accident, with her getting injured. And she couldn’t move any of the body parts to her left! Kini Maasi also told Ajju that Molly needs a hydrotherapy pool to get better again. And since the treatment was expensive, Kini Maasi was worried about how to arrange the money.
It’s inspiring to read how Ajju and his friend Karthik leave no stone unturned to attend Molly’s call for help.
The book has terms I had never read before, like ‘hydrotherapy’, ‘hunting accident’ and licensed hunters. The thing I loved the most in this book was Ajju’s never-ending compassion for Molly (I should be more like that, too!). Also, how beautifully the story touches on themes of family love, selfless friendship, determination and being the voice for the voiceless. The fantastic illustrations make this book an experience that lingers long after you finish the book.
“No one believes in people who do not believe in themselves.”
So, on that note, I’d like to thank the author for writing this extremely thought-provoking book. And thank you, Asha Aunty, for arranging this book!
I cannot help but share my views on this book. It is worth appreciating how effortlessly the story evokes laughter, tear and a sense of wonder. The book becomes a cherished companion, a source of comfort and inspiration, reminding you of the power of empathy and the profound impact that stories can have on our lives.
Happy reading, everyone!
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Disclaimer: Shipra and Sharav are part of the #kbcReviewerSquad and received this book as a review copy from the publisher.