By Carol Birch
Canongate Books, Paperback, 9781847676573, 348pp.
Publication Date: September 1, 2011
Nineteenth-century London comes vividly alive in this story a street urchin named Jaffy Brown. After a close call with an escaped tiger, Jaffy goes to work for Mr. Charles Jamrach, the famed importer of exotic animals. As the years pass, Mr. Jamrach recruits Jaffy and another boy named Tim to capture a fabled dragon during the course of an epic three-year whaling expedition in the East Indies. But when a violent storm sinks the ship, Jaffy and Tim are forced to confront their relationship to the natural world and the wildness it contains. "Jamrach's Menagerie" is a truly gripping novel about friendship, sacrifice, and survival.