The Odyssey of KP2: An Orphan Seal, a Marine Biologist, and the Fight to Save a Species
Booklist Reviews 2012 June #1
Hawaiian monk seal KP2 was born on the island of Kauai to an abusive mother who attacked and then abandoned him. Rescued and taught to eat at a rehabilitation facility, the young seal thrived and grew—with one problem: his eyes were clouding over, and KP2 was going blind. As a member of one of the most endangered species in the world, KP2 could not be left to fend for himself in the wild, for which his early exposure to humans had made him too tame. Transfer to wildlife biologist Williams' Marine Mammal Physiology Program at the University of California, Santa Cruz, was arranged over the protests of KP2's many fans (he was already a YouTube sensation), who wanted him to stay in Hawaii. In a charming blend of science and animal memoir, Williams tells KP2's tale—his checkered past, the wrangling between the federal government and the Hawaiian locals who loved him and between the same government officials and Williams, and her inevitable time in the media spotlight. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.
LJ Reviews 2012 February #1
Hawaiian monk seals are the most endangered marine mammal in U.S. waters, with only 1100 remaining. So when a newborn pup was abandoned by his mother on a Kauai beach, he was brought to the marine lab in Santa Cruz, CA, despite resistance from the local community. Studying Kauai Pup 2 (KP2) to learn more about his species, wildlife biologist Williams also fell in love with his fun-loving spirit. Animal-human bonding, ecology, and the cutest face on the cover (not the author's).[Page 50]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
PW Reviews 2012 April #1
In this sensitive, enjoyable book, Williams, a wildlife biologist and director of the Marine Mammal Physiology Program at UC–Santa Cruz, shares her personal journey with Kauai Pup 2 (KP2), a friendly Hawaiian monk seal abandoned at birth by his mother. Human intervention helps restore him, but consequently produces an animal that is neither wild nor tame. As Williams writes, "his months in rehabilitation with humans and release among seals had shaped him into a creature that had no home." Unable to adapt to living in the wild and deemed "expendable" in terms of the "reproductive viability" of this endangered species, KP2 is flown to Williams's marine mammal lab in Santa Cruz, Calif., for research purposes. There, Williams and her team face numerous difficulties, including securing safe transport for KP2, finding funding to support him in his necessary environment, fielding the tirades of the press, and trying to figure out the safest way to return him to Hawaii. Williams carefully blends scientific record-keeping with engaging storytelling and personal reflections. Agent: Noah Lukeman, Lukeman Literary Management. (July)[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC