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  • Hodder & Stoughton
  • Hodder & Stoughton

The Zookeeper of Belfast: A heart-stopping novel based on the incredible true story of the woman who saved a baby elephant from Belfast Zoo during the Blitz

S. Kirk Walsh

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Northern Ireland, Second World War fiction

A stunning World War Two novel for fans of Natasha Lester, Heather Morris, Kate Furnivall, Mandy Robotham.

As the bombs rain down on the city, Belfast's first ever female zookeeper must fight to save the baby elephant in her charge in this gripping, uplifting tale based on a true story.

1941. With the men away fighting, animal-lover Hettie Quin is made Belfast Zoo's first ever female zookeeper. She is put in charge of Violet, a three-year-old Indian elephant, and they soon form a special bond. With Violet at her side, Hettie can almost escape the grim reality of her life: the father who has abandoned her family; the sister who recently died; the war that's raging hundreds of miles away.

But the devastation of war is closer than she thought. When the bombs begin to rain down on the city, Hettie must gather all her courage to protect those she loves the most. Can she save Violet - and get through unscathed herself?

Based on a true story, The Zookeeper of Belfast is a gripping and uplifting tribute to what one woman's courage and tenacity can achieve in the most dire of circumstances - perfect for fans of Heather Morris, Natasha Lester, Kate Furnivall, Mandy Robotham and Fiona Valpy.

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