The Loneliest Polar Bear

The Loneliest Polar Bear

The heartbreaking and ultimately hopeful story of an abandoned polar bear cub named Nora and the humans working tirelessly to save her and her species, whose uncertain future in the accelerating climate crisis is closely tied to our own

Six days after giving birth, a polar bear named Aurora got up and left her den at the Columbus Zoo, leaving her tiny, squealing cub to fend for herself. Hours later, Aurora still hadn't returned. The cub was furless and blind, and with her temperature dropping dangerously, the zookeepers entrusted with her care felt they had no choice: They would have to raise one of the most dangerous predators in the world themselves, by hand. Over the next few weeks, a group of veterinarians and zookeepers would work around the clock to save the cub, whom they called Nora.

Humans rarely get as close to a polar bear as Nora's keepers got with their fuzzy charge. But the two species have long been intertwined. Three decades before Nora's birth, her father, Nanuq, was orphaned when an Inupiat hunter killed his mother, leaving Nanuq to be sent to a zoo. That hunter, Gene Agnaboogok, now faces some of the same threats as the wild bears near his Alaskan village of Wales, on the westernmost tip of the North American continent. As sea ice diminishes and temperatures creep up year-after-year, Gene and the polar bears--and everyone and everything else living in the far north--are being forced to adapt. Not all of them will succeed.

Sweeping and tender, The Loneliest Polar Bear explores the fraught relationship humans have with the natural world, the exploitative and sinister causes of the environmental mess we find ourselves in, and how the fate of polar bears is not theirs alone.

Title:The Loneliest Polar Bear
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9781984826336
Format Type:

    The Loneliest Polar Bear Reviews

  • Ben Goldfarb

    Had a chance to blurb this one; here's what I wrote: "The Loneliest Polar Bear artfully bridges two worlds: the fast-warming Arctic, where wild bears and human communities are imperiled by melting ice...

  • Lisa Konet

    I thought this was an emotional and important nature book about climate change and the effect it is having on some of the most vulnerable animals, the polar bears. I like how the book goes back in tim...

  • Susan Tunis

    4.5 stars. Sure, the cover is maudlin, but this book is better than it would lead you to believe. Yes, it's about a zoo-born bear raised in captivity. Both Nora (the bear) and her human keepers dealt ...

  • Dennis

    This is a good book. So is this one. And this one is good too, or at least important. Putting them all together and calling it one book, however, didn’t work completely smoothly for me.There is the ...

  • Matthew Galloway

    This was one of those books that didn't fit together well, for me. I was fascinated by the polar bear narratives and I certainly agree with the environmentalist parts and am glad I learned more. Howev...

  • Barbara

    Apparently I missed the zoo birth and feedings of Nora the Polar Bear at the Columbus Zoo. Fortunately, a book has been written with most of the details about Nora’s life, beginning with her birth a...

  • Shaun Jones

    Heartwarming story of Nora & the incredible 1st years of her life. It was interesting to learn that Polar Bears are harder to keep & breed in captivity. The book drives home the climate crisis we are ...

  • Elizabeth

    A book about climate change and how the smallest actions can have large consequences. It was fun to read about Nora, a polar bear I visited at the Oregon zoo before she was moved to Utah. I had no ide...

  • Steve Nolan

    I decided on giving this book a three - because it was good! I liked it! - but seeing the picture of the cover and reading the blurb I was like, oh no, I cannot give this polar bear anything less than...

  • Rhinnan

    The attempt to mesh together Nora’s story with those of the Inuit as well as environmental policy made for a disjointed narrative that was at times repetitive and never quite came together. I also j...