“Snow leopards” by Nicole Poppenhager and illustrated by Ivan Gantschev.
A beautiful children’s picture book that combines fact with fiction in the life of two young snow leopards, Siri and Simi. The young cubs are born to a caring mother high in the cold mountains. Growing up they the must learn to keep warm in ice and snow, how to hunt for food and learn about the harsh environment they live in. The cubs battle avalanches and hunter’s traps and are separated from their mother. But this is a heartwarming story of triumph over adversity and the cubs survive. There is an informative endnote with lots of facts about the endangered snow leopard for children and adults to learn. The illustrations are by the award-winning Ivan Gantschev and they are softly done in cool watercolors. Published by North South Books.
“My grandmother says” is about a young girl looking after wild snow leopards and helping to educate her friends about snow leopards in Nepal. This lovely little book was produced with the help of the Snow Leopard Conservancy. I think it’s the only children’s book on snow leopards published in English and Nepali, which is a great idea so that the children sharing snow leopard habitat in Nepal can read it in their own language. The story is by J. Sherpa and the drawings by Sanjib Rana.
There are also other editions in English, Chinese and Tibetan. It would make a beautiful gift for any young child. The drawings are lovely and the story an inspiring one about young people and caring for their environment. If you have some young children in your life or are a teacher they would be an enjoyable read and a learning experience. You can purchase the book from the Snow Leopard Conservancy here.
“The Snow Leopard” by children’s author/illustrator Jackie Morris. A beautiful book about the Wakhi people in Afghanistan.
The story, based on ancient village tales, concerns a shape-shifting guardian (the locals call them mergichans) in the body of the wide-eyed snow leopard. As a protector she guards an infinity of mountain realms and the people in them but it is time to find some-one to take her place. In this tale the snow leopard protector seeks out a young girl to train in the wisdom of guardianship. Not only is the story intriguing for kids but it also has a lovely environmental message about the future of the mountains.
“The Ghost of the Mountain” by Sujatha Padmanabhan is about, Rinzin, a boy from the village of Ang in the snowy mists of the Himalayas who is a trained nature guide.
One day he comes across his fellow villagers wanting to kill a captured snow leopard, which has killed many of the villager’s sheep and goats. Rinzin, who is only 16, makes it his mission to save the life of this beautiful snow leopard.
He knows they are rare and endangered and that somehow the villagers and the snow leopard are going to have to learn to live together in their shared habitat.
The tale is based on a true story that happened to Rigzin Tundup who worked for the Snow Leopard Conservancy India and saved a snow leopard from being killed in 2007.
The illustrations, by Madhuvanti Anantharajan, are bright and bold and almost leap off the page. They show the inside of people’s houses, the beautiful mountain scenery, the village folks and the face and body of the elegant snow leopard.
Professor John Shulman, a graduate of Harvard Law School, an internationally recognized expert in negotiation and conflict resolution recently published a children’s book “The Lama, the Snow Leopard and the Thunder Dragon.”
The book is about a delightful threesome of child heroes who battle the villains of ‘Progress’ and ‘Development’ in the Himalayas. Karma, the world’s first vegetarian snow leopard, a blustery thunder dragon and a mysterious lama help them. Read why John wrote the book here.
A lovely snow leopard picture book published in Novosibirsk (Russia). “Spirits of Sacred Mountains”, written by Irina Loginov, it is a fairy tale story of a cat and its cubs. The beautiful drawings are by well known Russian animal painter and artist Victor Pavlushina. Irina and her husband, snow leopard conservationist, Oleg Loginov plan to translate the book into English soon.