I’ve just finished two books in an intermediate series that’s debuting here this month. Jasmine Green Rescues, originally published in the UK, is a series of books about a young girl named Jasmine. Her dad is a farmer; her mom is a farm vet, and Jasmine and her best friend, Tom, both adore animals.
We meet Jasmine when her mom, Nadia, is called to help a farmer with one of his laboring cows. Jasmine tags along and visits a new litter of piglets, noticing that a runt has been overlooked and is in desperate need of special care. She quietly “adopts” the runt, when the farmer decides it’s best to let nature take its course, but Jasmine’s parents discover the piglet, which Jasmine has already named Truffle, and suggest Jasmine clear it with the farmer before allowing her to nurse Truffle back to health. Jasmine and her best friend, Tom, quickly discover that Truffle is pretty smart, which will come in very handy when Jasmine boards Tom’s guinea pigs!
This first book in the Jasmine Green series puts the overall theme of the series into motion. We meet Jasmine and her best friend, Tom, who are working toward creating a veterinary/pet boarding practice. Jasmine’s older sister and younger brother make appearances, as do her parents, to give us more depth and set up further adventures. Having a veterinarian mother and farmer father means readers get some good information about farm animals and pet care, too! There’s a lot packed into this slim volume, but animal lovers will embrace Jasmine and company, especially with Ellie Snowdon’s black and white illustrations adding adorable animals and farm scenes to enjoy. You can enjoy a preview chapter at Candlewick’s webpage.
In this second Jasmine Green outing, Jasmine and Tom rescue a group of orphaned duck eggs when an unleashed dog wreaks havoc on Jasmine’s father’s land. The work is hard and heartbreaking, but so rewarding when one duckling survives and bonds with Jasmine. Readers learn how much care goes into taking care of eggs and baby animals here, going through the emotional work with Jasmine throughout the story. Like Truffle the piglet, Button is a pretty extraordinary duckling and befriends other animals on the farm, becoming especially close to a lamb Jasmine’s dad cares for. Can Button help save the day – and the when an emergency happens at the farm?
Like A Piglet Called Truffle, A Duckling Called Button is sweet with emotional moments. Both books take a no-nonsense look at nature, which can be unkind; animals do die in these stories, and Jasmine grieves when they do, showing kids that it’s okay; it’s normal. The books illustrate the incredible amount of dedication, love, and work that go into caring for animals, and Jasmine’s plan to become a veterinarian/animal boarding service is sound and she and Tom show initiative in revisiting their plans and revising them as they go, also showing readers how to put their ideas and dreams into action. Once again, Ellie Snowdon’s artwork enhances the story with black and white illustrations. Sample a chapter at Candlewick’s webpage.
I’m enjoying what I’ve read of this series so far and look forward to seeing what other Jasmine Green adventures the future holds! Give these to your E.B. White fans, your Shelter Pet Squad readers, and fans of Hilary McKay’s Lulu series.