Animal Land

An Allegorical Fable

Poetry - General
140 Pages
Reviewed on 10/24/2015
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Author Biography

Leland James is the author of three books of poetry. He has been published in over fifty journals and magazines worldwide, including The South Carolina Review; The Lyric; The Spoon River Poetry Review; New Millennium Writings; The London Magazine; Vallum; Orbis; Magma; Osprey, Scotland’s international journal of literature; Arc; HQ, The Haiku Quarterly; Form Quarterly; Slipstream; Midnight Circus; The Society of Classical Poets Journal. In addition his poems have been selected for inclusion in over a dozen anthologise.
He was the winner of The Little Red Tree International poetry prize, the Portland Pen Poetry Contest, the Writer’s Forum short poem contest, and an International Publication Prize winner in an Atlanta Review poetry competition; also he was runners-up for the Fish International (Ireland), the Welsh, The London Magazine, and the Society of Classical Poet’s poetry prizes. He has placed or received honors in dozens of other competitions, including, Aesthetica Magazine; Morton Marr, The Southwest Review; the Golden Quill Awards; and the Bridport Prize. Leland received the Franklin-Christoph Merit Award for Poetry in 2008 and was nominated for a recent Push Cart Prize.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Samantha Gregory for Readers' Favorite

Animal Land: An Allegorical Fable by Leland James is the story of all the animals who live peacefully, but the peace is threatened when crocodile like creatures attack along with other strange creatures. The citizens of Animal Land think that if they stay out of it, then they will be left alone. Different areas are defeated around them, but the mayor makes an agreement with the invaders that if they stay out of their way, they won't be attacked. Other animals disagree and it soon becomes clear that they have no intention of leaving their land alone. So begins a long war that lasts for six years. Each side fights long and hard in order to be the victor.

Even after their long battle is over the animals are divided into two camps. Those that live in denial and quickly forget about the war, naively believing that it will never happen again and the other side who relish the peace but always keep a watchful eye out in case it should happen again.

Leland James offers an interesting tale with Animal Land: An Allegorical Fable. In order to maintain peace you have to be prepared to go to war and fight for what is yours. A sad fact of life. Illustrator Anne Zimanski brings the story to life with her pictures and the book is easy to read and follow. I feel this will do well and it is suitable for most ages. There is a strong message here.