Non Fiction

The Puma Years by Laura Coleman

I received an Advance copy thanks to the publishers and NetGalley (it is still available to request on the website!). However, the review is based on my listening to the audiobook via Kindle Unlimited. It took some time, but I managed to listen to the whole book, and I only went back to the digital copy to see the photos that came with it. There are a few, and the puma did not look anything like I imagined!

This is not a light read; it covers not just the environmental side of things that we hardly ever consider but also a personal journey. The author read out the book herself, and you can feel the mental processes, anguish, and growth through the experience. The proceeds of this book go towards the conservation activities spoken about. This one fact is enough to encourage more people to pick it up! It is a unique journey. The author was not someone with a clear plan for her future. She stumbles upon a volunteering program that involves tremendous and more challenging work (both mental and physical) than she could have imagined herself capable of successfully seeing to fruition.

There are three sections to the book, and each carries its own weight. I would have preferred three separate books, or at least two. Tackling this as one book was hard for me personally. This is the only reason I am rating it the way I am. I have not encountered such a story before, nor the depth of connection described here. I did find it a little troubling that everyone smokes in the book. I only recently found out about the microplastics in most cigarettes. The amount they consumed makes me a little sad that they unknowingly might be harming the very land they are working with since they probably were disposing it into the surrounding area. They do have bigger issues to tackle, though. The scope of what the team has to do to keep things afloat and achieve their goal on a day-to-day basis is unimaginable. The one thing that the size of the book does is take us along on the various minute tasks as well as large sudden ones and educate us while not talking at us.

As mentioned earlier, the author did a great job of narrating the book, and I recommend it to anyone who finds this topic even mildly interesting.

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