Saturday, November 28, 2015

Unspotted / Justin Fox

Reviewed by: BigAl

Genre: Memoir

Approximate word count: 9-10,000 words

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A former Rhodes Scholar who received his doctorate in English from Oxford University, Justin Fox is a Cape Town based travel writer and novelist.


People have driven Cape Leopards to the brink of extinction. Can we bring them back?

The majestic Cederberg mountains in the Western Cape region of South Africa are home to the elusive Cape Mountain Leopard. But for how long? The population has been decimated over centuries by human enemies and the survival of these glorious and mysterious cats is in jeopardy. Thanks to zoologist Quinton Martins and his Cape Leopard Trust, there may just be hope that the species will survive and continue to reign over its rocky habitat.”


I can't claim an affinity for the Cape Mountain Leopard, a breed native to South Africa that is close to extinction. In fact, I don't think I'd heard of it before reading this short work of non-fiction. However, I can relate to a good story, in this instance the author's attempt to actually see one of the elusive leopards with the help of Quinton Martins, a zoologist whose life and organization is dedicated to helping the breed survive. (I can also easily understand Fox and Martins' concerns by relating it to to disappearing breeds closer to home.) Although a quick read, Fox manages to pack tastes of adventure along with enough background to understand the leopard's plight while inspiring this reader to consider man's relationship with the natural world.

Format/Typo Issues:

No significant issues.

Rating: **** Four Stars

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