Jeff, the lemonade drinking, pizza eating Raccoon of Bethesda

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About the author:
Author/Illustrator Banu Turhan-Kayaalp lives in Bethesda, MD. She has a eight year old son who is also very interested in nature.

Jeff, the lemonade drinking, pizza eating Raccoon of Bethesda

Authored by Banu Turhan-Kayaalp

Jeff is no ordinary Raccoon. Born and raised in the city, he lives under the restaurant district. For Jeff, life is easy; restaurant owners treat him like a mascot, patrons feed him... Until one day his life takes a U-turn. He is captured by two animal control officers and brought to the woods.
Can he escape? Will he try to go back to the city? Or will he adapt to a new life in the woods?
Inspired by a true story, 'Jeff, the Raccoon of Bethesda" is a playful tale of leaving behind the extravagant city and adjusting to life in the forest, a raccoon's natural habitat.

Jeff's character is inspired by a true story. A few years ago our family was dining outside, in Bethesda, MD -our hometown, when we saw a raccoon coming out of a drain under the sidewalk. He climbed on top of the garbage bin, fished inside with his dexterous hands, retrieved a huge slice of pizza, sat next to us and leisurely ate the pizza. Some people gave him some other munchies. He acted as if he was a regular patron of the restaurant. Later that summer we saw him several more times. I don't know what really happened to him, but I would like to think somehow he is living happily ever after in his natural habitat.

As more natural wildlife habitats are turning into urban landscapes, wild animals are adapting and becoming our urban neighbors. Raccoons, hawks, coyotes, foxes, deer have become almost as common as the squirrels, roaming our gardens, parks, and yes, even sharing pizza with us.

This story is about reverse adaptation, about adapting back to nature as is my wish for Jeff and for ourselves.

Publication Date:
1456319582 / 9781456319588
Page Count:
Binding Type:
US Trade Paper
Trim Size:
8" x 10"
Full Color with Bleed
Related Categories:
Juvenile Fiction / Animals / General

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