• Nikon
  • Roag

Book review: A Hippo Love Story, by Karen Paolillo


Compiled: Tracy Knox

When the threads that hold human society together unravel, the animal kingdom suffers.

Karen Paolillo discovered this first-hand in Zimbabwe when she developed a close connection with thirteen hippos in their natural habitat, the Turgwe River. Her mission to save these exceptional animals after they came under threat of drought, land invasions, and poachers developed into a beautiful African love story. It is also the stirring tale of how one woman faced personal and financial adversities while ensuring the survival of a family of hippos, with Bob, a three-ton bull, as their leader.

With the establishment of the Turgwe Hippo Trust, Karen has triumphed as guardian of the hippos, and the animals have prospered ever since. A Hippo Love Story shares this heroic journey of a nature lover who became an ally of one of Africa's most fearsome animal species.

‘Beautifully written…an astonishing tale of love and courage, dedication and triumph.’
Kobie Kruger, author of All Things Wild and Wonderful and Mahlangeni

About the author

Karen Paolillo was born in the UK, where she grew up surrounded by an assortment of domestic and exotic animals. Since she has founded the Turgwe Hippo Trust, she has become known as the ‘hippo expert’, being called on by BBC Wildlife Magazine whenever they need a hippo question answered. She has also been featured in a National Geographic TV serial and on several TV shows, including 50/50 in South Africa. Follow Karen on Twitter @Turgwetrust or visit her website www.savethehippos.info/


To win one of three copies of this incredible book, A Hippo Love Story, by Karen Paolillo, answer this easy question:

Q: What is the name of the trust Karen established?

Email your answer to . The competition closes at midnight on Thursday, 22 May 2014. The winners will be drawn from all correct entries. DO IT NOW's competition rules apply.