In 1990, while Vince Smith was working as a senior keeper at Chester Zoo, a newborn chimpanzee in his care was abandoned by her mother. Named Sophie, the baby chimp was taken home and hand-reared by Vince and his wife. Six months later another new baby arrived: Oliver, their son.
'Sophie's Story' is an enthralling account of Sophie's life, taking readers on an emotional journey through her early years in the English countryside with Vince and his family; her traumatic removal from the family she adored into a captive zoo world; her repatriation to Africa and eventual reunion with her human foster family; and, finally, her integration into a semi-wild group of chimpanzees.
At the heart of the book is a dramatic and moving tale that will appeal to readers of all ages. Other accounts have been written about pet animals reared in people's homes, but this book is different: Sophie wasn't a pet. A highly personal narrative centred on a chimpanzee raised with human foster parents, 'Sophie's Story' is, as a biography, unique.
Describing in detail the parallel upbringing of an infant chimp and a human child, it is an inspirational story that provides fascinating insights into the nature of our closest-living relatives - and indeed ourselves.
- Publication Date:
- 06 / 11 / 2003
- 153 x 234mm