Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Owen and Mzee: Best Friends

Owen and Mzee: Best Friends

Isabella Hatkoff, Craig Hatkoff, Dr. Paula Kahumbu
Illustrator:  Peter Greste 
Nonfiction Board Book
For infants to age 3
Scholastic Press, 2007   ISBN: 978-0439928724

In the wild, a young hippo and a giant tortoise would not come face to face because they live in very different environments. In 2004, a young hippo called Owen, who lost his mother, was taken to an animal sanctuary in Kenya, and there the hippo adopted Mzee, a 130-year-old giant tortoise. Patient and gentle Mzee accepted the fact that everywhere he went, Owen would follow. The two animals formed a close bond of friendship, eating, swimming, and napping together.

In this charming board book, the true story of Owen and Mzee is presented to very young children. There are wonderful full color photographs on every double page spread, and simple sections of text describe the unusual friendship that Owen and Mzee shared.