This is a great read for pre-teens (or anyone young at heart) interested in Nepal, wildlife, or simply adventure! From run-ins with poachers and bears in the jungles of Bardiya, to struggling to survive in a mountain cave, to canoeing down the Karnali River, James and Alex (the protagonists) seem to find adventures wherever they go.
As an American journalist who grew up in Nepal myself, I loved the details in this book about wildlife, Nepali cultures, and politics / social problems. The book deals with a terrible time in Nepal's history - the Maoist civil war, when many ordinary people were stuck in the crossfire between rebels and the state security forces - without simplifying complex issues too much. The book's protagonists view the world from a unique vantage point as "Third Culture Kids." Wilson-Howarth, the author, shows her fondness for Nepal and Nepali people, and also demonstrates her lively imagination and story-telling ability!
The Magic Middle Finger
I love the setting of this story – it’s so sumptuously told. The sights, smells and sounds are vivid and evocative, it completely took me away while I was reading it.
An excellent story, well told, which will appeal to children and adults alike. It provides a range of observations on the local environment, wildlife and peoples of Nepal to stimulate the reader's imagination and encourage further reading on this fascinating country. Looking forward to reading Alex and James' next adventure.