Plucky Jasmine Green will do anything to save a helpless animal.
Jasmine is the daughter of a veterinarian mother and farmer father. Jasmine loves the animals on Oak Tree Farm, where the family lives, and dreams of growing up and starting her own animal-rescue center. In this series opener, Jasmine accompanies her mother on a medical visit to a neighboring farm, where she discovers a baby pig on the verge of death. The runt of the litter, the piglet is so small and weak that the farmer doesn’t think she’s worth rescuing. Outraged, Jasmine sneaks the piglet out in her coat, determined to give Truffle a chance at life. In the simultaneously publishing sequel, A Duckling Called Button, Jasmine rescues orphaned eggs. Jasmine’s sparkling personality, no-nonsense resourcefulness, and fiery commitment to wildlife make her a compelling heroine. The well-paced plot intertwined with unusual facts about animals and farms makes for a page-turning read. Jasmine’s biracial background, however, is slightly puzzling. Her father seems to be white, and her mother’s identity is implied by a curious combination of a Muslim given name (Nadia) and Sikh surname (Singh), making her identity difficult to pin down. Aside from Jasmine’s complexion and a passing reference to kati rolls, the South Asian part of her identity is never explored.
This fast-paced series outing has a spunky, likable heroine but suffers from authenticity issues. (Fiction. 7-10)