The Last Lions of Africa by Anthony Ham – Our Review
Richly written in beautifully evocative language, The Last Lions of Africa is a passionate plea for understanding and clarity for how we are to save this magnificent species.
Melbourne based Anthony Ham’s travel credentials are impressive. Having penned over 135 travel guides for Lonely Planet, he is one of Australia’s most experienced travel writers, having written for many newspapers and magazines from The Age to Africa Geographic. But his big passion is lions and the last wild refuges they have from humankind.
His vivid storytelling weaves the fate of five iconic individual lions, both male and female, their fame in their home lands, their kinship to their prides and their often remarkable relationship to wildlife rangers and guides.
This is a balanced account whereby he provides insight into subsistence tribes who have been savagely injured, lost prized cattle and even more heartbreaking, young children to lions.
The Lion Guardians program in Kenya is just one of the stories that holds a glimmer of hope… traditionally young Maasai warriors, whose homelands extend exclusively over lion terrain, were revered when they hunted their first lion – taking it’s lion name as his own when it was slain. Now the program gives them ownership – they track the lion and it becomes theirs’ – they name the lion, claim protectorship and mourn it when and if it dies.
This is a riveting love song to the plight of lions, beautiful and confronting, it’s about mankind rising above and deciding to be more, before time runs out for both us and also the last remaining lions.
Review by Nicole @ Great Escape Books