Some thoughts on my favorite stories in the compilation:
Litter: Told from a stray dog's point of view as the dog tries to survive on the streets and an examines the relationship of its human rescuers as the muddle through a relationship. I loved this story and the dogs point of view, we hear many rescue stories from the human's point of view that is always how the animal saved the human. I appreciate the story from the other side and examining how dogs end up on the street.
The Boto's Child: An enchanting and magical story about the mythology surrounding the pink river dolphins of the Amazon, the Boto's. Even though completely based on mythology of several native Amazon tribes, this moving story shows how humans have empathized with the Boto for centuries.
Miriam's Lantern: An appropriate closing story for the collection; a young man watches the last of a species of bird die alone in captivity. As he watches the bird live out it's life, he examines his own choices, knowing that he had a hand in the species demise. I thought this story was especially poignant today, as we may very well be watching a variety of species die due to choices we have made.
Among Animals was provided for free through the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program in exchange for an honest review.
Among Animals 2: The Lives of Animals and Humans in Contemporary Short Fiction
Some stories that affected me were:
Phoenix Cross looks into factory farming of chickens and genetic engineering. Some of us may know exactly the horrid conditions in which factory farmed chickens are raised, we might ignore it, we may not care, some of us might choose free-range chickens. Phoenix Cross brings out not only the effects of this method on the chickens, but on the farmers as well. I loved the connection of boy and bird in this story and the bird's point of view really made me think about how our food gets to us.
Exotic Animal Alert: Please Post Widely inspects caretakers and zoo animals as well as the close bond one might form with an animal that is truly wild. Again, an animal point of view was used in order to empathize with the clouded leopard point of view. What I found most interesting was the differing opinions about Sokar the clouded leopard formed by the husband and wife who raised him and how Sokar's presence impacted their relationship.
A Normal Rabbit is the story of a family and their ordinary pet rabbit, Camper. Camper is a symbol for many things in the family, but most of all Camper's presence is able to elicit responses of empathy for other living things.
Overall, an interesting compilation of stories that will hopefully make readers reexamine their relationships with the animals and environment around them.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.