The Call of the Bison – a review by Zoo

We recommend this Book: The Call of the Bison.

The Call of the Bison, by Paola Giometti, combines wilderness adventures with a biological focus. Mara Marques, a biologist at the São Paulo Zoo Foundation kindly wrote a message for the inside cover of the book: “… dedication, love and respect are the words that define The Call of the Bison”, a tale about the migration of these animals.

Have you ever wondered how animals find their migration routes? The Call of the Bison (Tales of the Earth series) is a fictional tale that tells the exciting story of the importance of migration from the point of view of the bison.

Portuguese version of the book

In contrast to many tales for children, the writer Paola Giometti’s works stand out because her animal stories are inspired by historical facts and animal behaviour. The book was launched in 2017 by Andross Editora, as part of the Engrenagem publishing house, and tells the story of Mika, a bison calf that becomes separated from her herd during her first migration. She faces cold and hunger and learns to listen to her instincts on her journey through the prairies in a story that seems to take place near Yellowstone in the United States. Then she meets Yurok, an elderly bison with no purpose in life, who is awaiting his not-so-distant end. Seeing the opportunity to help Mika and regain a sense of purpose, he offers her his company on this life-or-death journey, where they battle the bleak approaching winter and the strange and dangerous predator that is following the bison’s tracks. Yurok teaches her about the importance of the call of the bison: the only way to rediscover their migration pathway and to understand a mysterious sound coming from the mountains.

The book is aimed at young readers and introduces the concepts of species and ecosystems, the food chain, biomes, ecological relationships, natural balance and countless fun facts about animal behaviour. Besides these themes, the book highlights the importance of family and the friends that stand by us in the most difficult times. It also paints a positive portrait of how the act of migrating can be an important choice when the soil around us turns sterile.

The Call of the Bison was launched after The Destiny of the Wolves and The Code of the Eagles, which are also part of the Tales of the Earth series and intertwine with Mika’s story. Interestingly, it doesn’t matter which order you read the books in, as the stories are independent and all take place in the same setting.


Photography by Jake Davis

“The fact that this genre is lacking in the literary market, combined with my love of animals, was the inspiration behind Tales of the Earth. Children who like animals grow up and still like them. There’s no reason why this type of story can’t be for both young people and adults,” explains Paola.

Synopsis: During the bison’s yearly migration, Mika becomes separated from his herd. Facing the desperate loneliness of a defenseless calf in a dangerous wilderness, he has to follow his instincts and the advice of an old bison. This will be the only way for him to find his way back to his migrational pathway and make sense of the mysterious call from the Mountains.

Paola Giometti is a Brazilian biologist with a PhD in Natural Sciences, who draws on inspiration from wildlife to write stories for young people. When she was 11 years old, she published her first book, Night at Dawn, making her the youngest writer in Brazil! Later, she wrote the Tales of the Earth series, made up of The Destiny of the Wolves, The Code of the Eagles and The Call of the Bison. The series is set around 16 thousand years ago, when people were beginning to tame animals for the first time.

In 2018, she released the book Drako and the Golden Dragons’ Elite, which received media attention as ”a fantasy that reflects on differences, helping young people to overcome pessimism and problems with self-esteem”. Then, in 2020, she published Symbiosa and the Threat in the Arctic, soon to be distributed in schools. Also in 2020, Paola concluded the Storytelling course from Pixar. She currently lives in Tromsø, in Norway, where she is working on her next books, which will be released in Portuguese, English and German.

Written by São Paulo Zoo Foundation (Text available in Portuguese)

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