Thursday, February 27, 2014

Rolla Rhino by Claire Sharminni Thamboo

My friend Claire Sharminni Thamboo and I came up with an idea for a series of picture book stories about endangered animals in Africa and around the world. And so I wrote and published Emma's Elephant and Claire wrote Rolla Rhino. I'm sharing Claire's story here  with her permission. I'm also posting a concept sketch that Enrico Sallustio did to accompany her story.

We're still hoping to get Rolla Rhino published, but till then we hope you enjoy it right here. In the mean time, please encourage anyone you know NOT to buy Rhino horns or other products. The killing has to stop.

Click these links to lend your support:

Unite for Wildlife


Rolla Rhino
By Claire Sharminni Thamboo

The bush moves again.
A man pops out the top.
He’s got a gun.
The gun is pointed at Daddy Ralph.
‘Dad’s in trouble!’ gasps Rolla.
‘I’ll stop the hunter,’ says Penelope Python.
She coils around his leg.

The man drops his rifle and fearlessly yanks Penelope off.
‘Piddling python!’ he says, tying Penelope in a knot.
‘Hang on Penelope! I’ll rescue you!’ says Sally Shorebird.
She flaps her wings in the man’s face.

The man catches her by the feet.
‘Scraggly shorebird!’ he says, stuffing Sally into his bag.
‘Attack!’ cries Dorothy, rolling a giant dung ball up to the man.
‘Dumb dung beetle!’ he says, flicking his finger at her.
The dung ball and Dorothy launch into the air and land on top of a tree.
‘Don’t you hurt my daddy and my friends!’
Rolla charges at the man.
He picks up his rifle.
Rolla’s jaws open wide.
Owwww! Ow! Ow! Ow! 
‘Stop biting! Stop biting! Stop biting!’ yells the hunter.
‘Don’t stop biting! Don’t stop biting! Don’t stop biting!’ yells everyone else.
Daddy Ralph looks up, surprised.
‘What are you doing, Rolla?’

‘Um…nothing?’ says Rolla,
‘Biting!’ says everyone else.
‘Biting me!’ says the hunter, running away.
Daddy Ralph gives Rolla the biggest nudge ever.
‘That’s my girl, Rolla,’ Daddy Rhino says.
‘That’s my girl!’
Rolla, biting is bad but sometimes …
you just have to do it.
‘O…K…,’ says Rolla.
‘Stop biting, Rolla!’
‘But YOU SAID you’ve got to do it sometimes!’

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