This story has its origins in a story I wrote as a gift for two American friends I met on a cruise boat. The original hero of the book was their grandson: a Seattle boy who loved the zoo. I guessed that he would certainly love a story about saving the animals from a wicked woman looking to sell endangered species to Chinese buyers.
I really wanted in this story to highlight the commitment of the elderly zoo volunteers; with Ashby, they turn the tables on the crooks and rescue all the animals. I particularly like the end of the adventure when the parade of police motorcycles forms up and returns the rescued animals to the zoo There’s a little bit of political comment in there too along the way.
I leave it to the reader to decide whether wicked Trixie Felon has been sufficiently punished; her sidekick, Frank, exiled to the snows of Manitoba, may have got off lightly.