Saving Sorya: Chang and the Sun Bear
Illustrated by Jeet ZdungAges 6-8
Written by scientist and environmental activist Trang Nguyen, Saving Sorya: Chang and the Sun Bear is an inspirational graphic novel adventure, based on a true story, about a young conservationist who overcomes the odds to save a sun bear.
When endlessly curious Chang discovers a bear farm near her home in Vietnam, she decides to do everything she can to save wild animals – by becoming a conservationist! After teaching herself survival skills and learning all she can about the rainforest, Chang is finally accepted as a rescue centre volunteer. But her toughest challenge yet comes when she makes a vow to return Sorya – the sun bear she raised from infancy – back to the wild. Because despite being a different species, Sorya is Chang’s best friend. And letting a friend go is never easy, even when it’s the right thing to do.
With breathtaking illustrations and STEM facts galore, Chang’s daring story is for any young reader, animal lover, and intrepid explorer who’s ready for adventure!
Zdung’s use of watercolors in his frankly gorgeous illustrations enhances the rainforest setting, and the portrayals of its animal inhabitants are the epitome of wild and free. While the natural images tend to be realistic, the human characters are drawn in a manga-influenced style with elements like oversized eyes, large sweat drops, and speed lines. This blending of styles and varied panel layouts creates dynamic spreads and stunning page turns.
Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Nguyen’s heartfelt tale is perfect for animal-loving fans of Katherine Applegate’s The One and Only Ivan and Rosanne Parry’s A Wolf Called Wander... Stirring and gorgeously rendered, this eco-conscious tale is a superb purchase for all libraries.
School Library Journal, starred review
What an accomplishment. I cannot praise this book enough. Jeet Zdung's illustrations are incredible. Get this book.
Mathew Tobin, Lecturer at Oxford Brookes University and Blogger