Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.
When my nine year old son was a baby, he was given a little plush giraffe and it became his very first “best friend”. The giraffe has always been his favorite animal and he loves to learn everything he can about this wonderful animal species. Therefore, I knew that he would love the newly released children’s book title, Gemina: The Crooked-Neck Giraffe. What I didn’t realize is that this book would have an impact on all of us……….
Written and illustrated by Karen B. Winnick, this wonderful story that was inspired by a real-life giraffe named Gemina is extraordinary. Gemina was a healthy giraffe who was born at the San Diego Wild Animal Park in 1986 and later moved to the Santa Barbara Zoo. When she was three years old she developed a worrisome bump on her neck that caused her neck to become very crooked. Since Gemina was able to still do everything that other giraffes did and was not in pain she was able to live a full life at the zoo. She became a sensation and lots of people specifically visited the zoo just to see the “Crooked-Neck Giraffe”. I don’t want to spoil the ending but I will tell you that this beautiful story is a real tear jerker and my children begged for me to read it again and again…….they loved it.
In addition to the beautifully written story that fully engaged my children (and me), the illustrations are just lovely. My son takes art very seriously and loved that it featured real artwork by children in honor of Gemina. It even inspired him to create his very own pencil sketch of this awesome giraffe. The photograph of the “real” Gemina at the end was a hit with my kids too and they immediately wanted to go online to learn more about her life.
Gemina: The Crooked-Neck Giraffe is available for purchase for the SRP of $15.95 for the hardcover edition. What I love is that all of the author’s proceeds from the sale of this book will go to directly support the animals currently living at the Santa Barbara Zoo. What a great way to help celebrate National Zoo and Aquarium Month!
You can even get the Gemina Activity Kit download for free by visiting Karen B. Winnick.
One lucky winner will receive a copy of Gemina: The Crooked-Neck Giraffe along with an adorable plush giraffe!